GOP Candidate For LT. Governor Settles PDC Violation for $50,000

WSRP-Endorsed Candidate Joshua Freed relied on Matt Shea’s lawyer to negotiate the settlement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | September 24, 2020

SEATTLE — Failed Gubernatorial candidate turned write-in candidate for Lieutenant Governor Joshua Freed will finally face accountability for illegally reimbursing himself for a $500,000 loan he made to his campaign for governor in the fall of 2019. Back in March of this year, Washington State Democrats filed a PDC complaint against Freed for his previously reported failure to comply with state campaign finance laws when his campaign repaid that loan. Washington State campaign finance law is clear on this point: Freed is limited to repaying himself $6,000 in a primary and another $6,000 in the general election. 

Today, the former Bothell mayor settled the complaint with the PDC by stipulating to a $50,000 fine — $25,000 of which will remain suspended as long as Freed does not repeat his blatant disregard for Washington state’s campaign finance laws. 

Who Freed trusted to negotiate this settlement is just as notable as the fact that the failed gubernatorial candidate is actually facing consequences for his disrespect for the rule of law: Mark Lamb, the attorney who represented Freed in this proceeding, has plenty of experience representing accused domestic terrorist and Republican state representative Matt Shea before the PDC. 

In the past Freed has referred to Mark Lamb as his “best friend”. Mark Lamb also happens to be the lawyer for Matt Shea and has represented him in similar hearings. 

Praise for Matt Shea:

This is not the first time Joshua Freed has found common cause with Matt Shea. 

At the Kittitas County Governor’s Forum on July 20th someone in the crowd asked Freed if he stood behind former Rep. Matt Shea, who declined to run for re-election this year after an independent investigator concluded that he’d planned acts of domestic terrorism.

From The Stranger’s report on the forum:

“Freed’s stance on the controversial topic of whether to support a guy who promoted training child soldiers for the holy war will not surprise you.

First Freed described the issue as a divide between Shea and House Republican Minority Leader J.T. Wilcox, who helped block Shea’s expulsion from the legislature if not the caucus. He then blamed Democrats for blowing up the issue in a purely political effort to divide Republicans, suggested the matter would have been better handled “behind closed doors,” and then issued a call for unity: “What I want to see is J.T. and Matt come together and find a way that they could quietly move through this and find a greater understanding. I don’t think that it was properly handled in such a way to be able to move forward,” Freed said. “So for me, I’ll stand with both in the sense that we need to be Republicans standing up for conservative values, for fiscal responsible issues.”

Pandering to Anti-Vaxxers

During the same event, Freed appeared eager to scoop up Washington’s small but loud anti-vaxxer coalition. When asked if the government should mandate a COVID-19 vaccine or give everyone “the right to choose if they want it or not,” Freed took the bait and lobbed a non sequitur at abortion supporters.

Again, from The Stranger’s report on the forum:

“People should have the right to choose whether they want [it],” Freed said. “I hear from the other side of the aisle that it’s my body, my choice. If that’s true, it’s so interesting that they’re pushing for mandatory vaccination.”

Let’s set aside the fact that no one is seriously talking about forcing people to take a coronavirus vaccine—though if people were seriously talking about that it would be Trump and his ghouls, who need the vaccine in order to fully reopen the economy. It would not be “interesting” to observe that someone who supports abortion also supports forced vaccination against a deadly respiratory virus. Aborting a fetus directly affects exactly one person, while refusing a vaccine directly endangers the lives of entire communities—especially, in this case, kids and the elderly. Abortion is “my body, my choice;” anti-vaccination is my body, your consequences.

In any event, in case there was any confusion, Freed blew his anti-vaxxer dog whistle moments later, after being asked how he’d “roll back” requirements to vaccinate kids if they want to attend public schools. “Well, again, I think we should not require forced vaccinations,” he said.