Rebecca Otto is running for reelection for the Minnesota State Auditor position. Her chances are good because she’s competent and her opponents have lots of problems. Earlier this month, Rebecca pointed out that they’d made simple math mistakes on their campaign contribution filings. Now they’ve corrected their mistakes.
Two Republican candidates for the state’s top numbers job have submitted amended campaign finance filings after their DFL opponent, State Auditor Rebecca Otto, pointed out basic math errors in their reports.
Republican candidates Pat Anderson, a former State Auditor who Otto unseated in 2006 after Anderson made hundreds of millions of dollars in errors, and Long Lake Mayor Randy Gilbert, both filed amendments last week reflecting Otto’s corrections.
“Anyone can make a mistake,” said Otto. “As State Auditor I oversee more than $20 billion in taxpayer dollars spent each year by local governments.”
Pat Anderson’s gubernatorial report misstated her ending cash balance. The reporting form instructs candidates to subtract the total campaign expenses of $26,420.99 from total receipts of $29,659.00. Pat Anderson said that number was $3,584.66, but actually doing the math gives a different number: $3,238.01. Here is her correction.
But it gets worse for Pat Awada Anderson. This isn’t her first screw-up. Let’s go back to the 2006 election cycle. Pat’s demise began when she lost a few laptops with thousands state employee private information on them …
Here’s the story from 4 years ago:
The day after news broke of the theft of sensitive personal identity information on three laptops stolen from a locked room in the State Auditor’s office, State Auditor Patricia Anderson was out campaigning in Le Sueur Minnesota and other Greater Minnesota communities. Auditor candidate Rebecca Otto says that shows Anderson does not take her job seriously.
“If I were the state auditor, I wouldn’t be out campaigning on a workday the day after a major security breach happened in my office – I’d be doing my job and getting to the bottom of the security breach,” said Otto.
The security breach might not have been Anderson’s fault…if the same thing hadn’t happened one month earlier. Another laptop stolen in mid-May had no private data, but should have shown the office’s vulnerability, said Otto, yet Anderson failed to take substantive action. Now, three laptop thefts later, she says she will.
Ruh Roh, Pat. But it gets worse. Two legislators called on Pat to pay for monitoring of the SSNs to ensure that no credit card fraud happened as a result of her incompetence. Her response in a St. Paul Pioneer press article:
So far, Anderson’s staff and St. Paul police have found no evidence suggesting the private information on the computers has been misused. But Anderson said today that her staff has now installed encrypted software on other computers, and she said employees have begun installing cable locks on both laptop and desktop computers.
“The likelihood that the computers were stolen for the data is almost zero,” Anderson said. But, in letters to the people whose private information was put at risk, she urged the people to telephone national credit-monitoring agencies and make a cost-free request for a fraud alert to be included in their files.
Then Rebecca reviewed Pat’s work. She found errors and Pat corrected them.
A former state legislator from the Stillwater area, Otto said she was concerned about what she referred to as a series of major errors that have come out of the State Auditor’s office. In April Otto discovered there was a $12 million error in state Department of Education financial reporting of school district revenues. The report has since been amended, she noted.
Otto said she had discovered “dozens of accounting errors” in reports issued by the auditor’s office, and she criticized Anderson for not addressing these problems or taking responsibility.
And how is it that Pat Awada Anderson thinks she’s qualified? She couldn’t do her job before, has she taken remedial math since this January?