Politics

FEC filings: RNC money spent at Hollywood bondage club by Republican contractor

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

The Republican who spent $1,946.25 on “meals” at a bondage-themed Hollywood nightclub — and expensed the charges to chairman Michael Steele’s Republican National Committee — is the owner of a marketing firm who works for a number of Republicans including a current gubernatorial candidate in California, The Daily Caller has learned.

Erik Brown, who owns Dynamic Marketing Inc. and within the last year charged the Steve Poizner for Governor campaign more than $10,000 for campaign literature and mailings, was reimbursed by the RNC for the almost $2,000 in charges at Voyeur West Hollywood, according to FEC filings and online reports reviewed by The Daily Caller.

RNC spokesman Doug Heye, interviewed on Fox, said the RNC would be reimbursed for the money spent at the club, but said he did not know the individual who spent the funds, even when asked if it was Brown.

Records show Brown charged Poizner for more than $10,000 in services in May 2009, but a Poizner spokesman immediately distanced the candidate from Brown. Spokesman Jarrod Agen said Brown is merely a “direct mail vendor” and is not a consultant to the Poizner campaign. He says Brown hasn’t worked for them since June. “You can’t call someone a ‘Poizner consultant’ who we haven’t dealt with in nearly a year,” Agen said in an e-mail to The Daily Caller.

The Daily Caller left a message for Brown at work, but he did not immediately return a reporter’s phone call. The RNC has not yet explained how or why this expense was approved.

Brown’s DMI Direct has offices in Washington and California, according to the company Web site.

The RNC has denied that Steele spent the money at Voyeur. But it appears Brown is close to the chairman. In October, Brown wrote on Twitter, “Enjoying the football game with RNC Chairman Michael Steele. (Eagles vs Redskins at FedEx Field)”.

UPDATE: After The Daily Caller linked to Brown’s Twitter account above, it appears the account was deleted.