State Sen. Paula Dockery, a Republican candidate for governor, today demanded that state party officials release all financial records, including the credit card statements given to any party leader since RPOF Chairman Jim Greer took office in 2007. "If there is no improprierty, we remove the cloud of suspicion,'' she told the Herald/Times. "If there is impropriety, we own up to it and rebuild the trust.''
She said she will be calling on the two candidates who are hoping to replace Greer at the party meeting on Feb. 20 -- state Sen. John Thrasher and Broward Republican Executive Committeewoman Sharon Day -- to agree to release all credit card statements and conduct a financial audit "to remove this shroud of secrecy.''
Dockery said the party "can't move forward until we have transparency.'' The Orlando Sentinel reported today that since Greer cut up his party credit card in response to complaints about party spending, the spending continued as his deputy, Delmar Johnson, used Greer's credit card to pay for many of the expenses through him.
Dockery's opponent, Bill McCollum, has called for a thorough audit and tighter internal party controls but he has stopped short of endorsing the release of the controversial American Express credit card statements.
UPDATE: McCollum spokeswoman, Kristy Campbell would not say whether McCollum would agree to release the statements or not. "He believes we should take measures that that what happened never happens again,'' she said.
Sharon Day, however, said that if she is elected "I would do a forensic audit to see what has happened but whether we release it out, I would decide at that time,'' she said.
Dockery aid the party should come clean on all its credit card expenses since 2007. "We learned yesterday about the obscene salaries that one person was making. What else is out there?'' she said.
She expects that would include former House Speaker Marco Rubio, now Republican a candidate for U.S. Senate against Gov. Charlie Crist, former House Speaker Ray Sansom, speaker designate Rep. Dean Cannon as the Senate's former, current and incoming presidents -- Ken Pruitt, Jeff Atwater and Mike Haridopolos.
"I see no reason why anybody should have these cards,'' she said. "There seems to be a concerted effort to keep these records confidential. If there is nothing to hide, release the records. If there is something to hide, release the records."