Justin Mendes has been a very busy young man. When it is not looking after his 2 year old son or 1 year old marriage, it is trying to keep his political allies out of hot water.
Recently minted Republican Hanford Councilmember Francisco Ramirez has issues. While we could debate his republican bona-fides, (perhaps he is another one of those “libertarians”) Mr. Ramirez is in hot water with the Kings County Grand Jury and the FPPC.
Oh, and there is a recall election with his name on it. Unfortunately for Mendes and Ramirez, SB96 does not apply to Council Elections.
The Kings County Grand Jury lit in to Francisco Ramirez:
Issue #1. Ramirez did not file campaign finance forms.
According to the [Grand Jury] report, Ramirez told the grand jury that he actually raised $1,024. The report claims Ramirez raised more than $3,000 in donations and in-kind gifts. The grand jury said it verified the amount via written and verbal testimony from donors, as well as cancelled checks, invoices and other documents.
Now this is Cub Scout stuff. The old adage is, when in doubt, file. So then was Ramirez trying to hide something? All this, and Ramirez never opened up a campaign checking account. When I work with a candidate, opening up a checking account is the third thing I tell them to do. Apparently, Mendes needs remedial education on his way to creating his own hegemony.
Issue #2. Ramirez has a fake education, yet campaigned as if he had a real one
The report cites an October 2000 ruling by the California Supreme Court, which found Columbia Pacific University could not legally issue degrees after June 25, 1997. Ramirez received his degrees in May 1999 and June 2000.
According to the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education, degrees issued after the cutoff date are not legally valid, meaning that employers, schools and licensing agencies may not recognize them.
The Hanford Sentinel, which I allege to have been published in Justin Mendes’ Garage, tries to explain away both of these issues. It must be nice having a local paper in your back pocket.
The people that wish to recall Justin Mendes’ right hand man had a few choice things of their own to say – when not being “edited” CNN-Style by the Hanford Sentinel:
The recall notice cites a June 2016 Kings County grand jury reportalleging that Ramirez raised more than $3,000 in donations and in-kind gifts.
The recall notice also claims that Ramirez “knowingly and willfully misled voters” when he said he had two college degrees.
The degrees, which were obtained from online-based Columbia Pacific University, were declared invalid by the California Supreme Court in 2000.
Small town politics is fun, but what will happen when the DCCC starts looking in to this stuff and tying it to the Congressman? It seems to me that Justin Mendes has some serious issues, and the people of Hanford have serious issues with him. Perhaps this is why Justin Mendes 18 months out from Re-Election attempted to get the heat off of himself by saying he is not running for re-election?
Shooting Republicans? Check.
Grand Jury Reports? Check.
Recall Efforts? Check.
All this and Justin Mendes is only 30.