GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The Kent County Intermediate School District says that a flier it distributed through school e-mail announcing the "MEA Grassroots - Patrick Miles Reception," describes an educational forum, not a political event, according to Michigan Capitol Confidential.

Campaign finance law prohibits public bodies like school districts from using e-mails to promote political events, Michigan Capitol Confidential reported. Miles has been endorsed by the local teachers union, and the Kent County Education Association blog reported the event as a "rally" at which "members are invited to participate and listen and meet Pat Miles, our endorsed 3rd district candidate," the report said.

The district invited both Miles and his competitor, Republican Justin Amash, to attend the event to discuss Congressional educational issues, Kent ISD assistant superintendent Ron Koehler told Capitol Confidential. Amash declined and did not suggest an alternative date when asked, according to Michigan Capitol Confidential.

The men are candidates in the U.S. 3rd Congressional race, Michigan Capitol Confidential reported.

"It seems quite the stretch," Patrick Wright, senior legal analyst for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, told Michigan Capitol Confidential about sending out the flier through the school e-mail.

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy publishes Michigan Capitol Confidential and Michigan Education Digest.

SOURCE:
Michigan Capitol Confidential, "Kent ISD Resources Used to Promote a 'Reception' for Democrat Congressional Candidate," Oct. 6, 2010

FURTHER READING:
Michigan Capitol Confidential, "School District Resources Used for Candidate Campaign Announcement," Feb. 26, 2010

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