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  • Opportunity PAC Peter Tateishi has been a consultant and chief of staff, but never has worked as a registered lobbyist.

Ad Watch: Ad incorrect calling Tateishi a 'lobbyist'

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Friday, Apr. 11, 2014 - 11:00 pm

Republican Assembly candidate Peter Tateishi was ripped as a "lobbyist" who will harm the middle class in a campaign flier funded largely by public employee groups this month. The attack ad was bankrolled by Opportunity Political Action Committee, whose top donor is California State Council of Service Employees. Tateishi and Democrat Ken Cooley are running in the 8th Assembly District that stretches from Citrus Heights to the Sacramento County line south of Wilton. The following is a description of the ad and an analysis by The Bee's Jim Sanders:

Flier: "What experience did Peter Tateishi get in Washington, D.C?" asks the mailed ad, which makes several claims against Tateishi, the thrust of which is that he lobbies for the elite.

The ad links Tateishi to a "special interest agenda" by listing donations by Occidental Petroleum, Charles Munger Jr. and Chevron to entities supporting him.

"Tateishi learned how to lobby against the middle class. Middle-class families just can't afford another politician like Peter Tateishi who will put the billionaire special interests first and our middle-class families last."

ANALYSIS: The ad is incorrect that Tateishi is a lobbyist. He never has been registered with the state or federal government as one. But he once served as consultant for an Indian tribe seeking approvals to build an Amador County casino.

Tateishi, now chief of staff to Republican U.S. Rep. Dan Lungren, owned Tateishi Strategies from late 2007 to early 2009. His primary client was the Ione Band of Miwok Indians, from which he earned $102,000 in 2008 and $8,000 in 2009.

Matt Franklin, then-tribal chairman, described Tateishi as a "think tank" person, someone who would propose ideas, provide advice and help develop strategies. In that role, he attended some meetings between tribal and elected officials, including a Plymouth City Council session.

County records say the purpose of Tateishi Strategies was to develop public relations, communications and political strategies.

Before and after his stint as a consultant, Tateishi worked for Lungren. From 2005-2007, he was field representative and intergovernmental affairs director. Upon his return in 2009, he served first as deputy chief of staff, then as chief of staff beginning in late 2010.

The ad's mention of Occidental Petroleum, Munger and Chevron stemmed from donations not made to Tateishi directly, but to political groups that compiled money for multiple campaigns and spent a portion to help Tateishi.

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