A shadowy Colorado super PAC is behind a mailer attacking former Gov. Jon Huntsman that Utah Republicans are finding in their mailboxes ahead of the June primary election.
The mailer paid for by the “Protecting our Constitution” super PAC, hits Huntsman for quitting as Utah’s Governor in 2009 to take the post as Ambassador to China in the Obama administration.
“Jon Huntsman left Utah to serve in Obama’s administration,” blares the mailer as it invokes the twin GOP boogeymen of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. “During this trying time, we need a leader who will be there for us.”
There’s not much information available about Protecting our Constitution, the dark money group behind the mailer. The return address leads to a UPS store in Greenwood Village, Colorado, which is a suburb of Denver.
Protecting our Constitution filed as a political action committee in Utah on June 15th, just 2 days before the mailer started hitting Utah mailboxes. Katie Kennedy is listed as the primary agent for the group. Kennedy lists her employer as Strategic Compliance, a limited liability corporation in Colorado. Strategic Compliance has a minimal internet presence, with no company web page and a skeleton business page on Facebook. Kennedy’s profile on LinkedIn is similarly bare-boned. An email to Kennedy seeking comment about the mailer did not receive a response.
The other primary officer linked to the group is Margorie Haun of La Sal, Utah. An online search shows Haun is a teacher at La Sal Elementary but also is a freelance journalist who publishes the Free Range Report and has written for several right-wing publications. Her profile on the journalism site MuckRack uses the WWG1WGA hashtag, which is a reference to the QAnon conspiracy theory that details an alleged “deep state” plot against President Donald Trump. Followers of QAnon have falsely accused many liberal politicians and Hollywood actors of being part of a global child sex trafficking ring. Haun also appears to be behind the @ReaganGirl Twitter handle. Haun’s Twitter account has repeatedly attacked Spencer Cox as well.
The group’s initial filing with the Utah Elections Office lists a single $65,000 donation from Western Citizens Protecting our Constitution, a Colorado non-profit organization that lists Katie Kennedy as the principal agent. As a 501(c)(4) organization, they are not required to disclose their donors. We may never know who paid for the attack mailers against Huntsman as money was routed through the nonprofit organization in Colorado to pay for the printing and mailing in Utah.
Protecting Our Constitution has been extremely active in Colorado politics. This article notes the organization was originally formed to fight gun control legislation but has expanded to support numerous Republican candidates in Utah’s neighboring state. The article also notes Kennedy is listed as the primary agent for more than 60 politically oriented groups in that state.