If you remember a while back, we heard from a Hillsborough resident who had gotten a polling call with some very negative messages about Rose Ferlita, who is running against Brad Swanson for the Republican nomination to the Hillsborough County Commission.
Those calls, she said, were placed by Basswood Research, a pollster out of Washington, D.C., one that I worked with in the Johnnie Byrd campaign in 2004. It is run by consultants Jon Lerner and Jonathan Baron, who once worked for Tom DeLay in Congress. They are very talented guys company, Red Sea LLC, is the polling/media firm known for their work on behalf of The Club for Growth, a supply-side advocacy group that runs fiscal conservative Republicans against incumbent Republicans who conservative enough.
I was curious to see who paid for those calls, so over the weekend, I waded through the campaign finance reports that were due last Friday.
The short answer: Basswood Research doesn't show up on anyone's financial disclosure reports. They are nowhere to be found.