The Texas Ethics Commission fined the head of a conservative advocacy group for failing to register as a lobbyist, but the organization’s leader argues that he should not have to pay because he runs a media organization.
Michael Quinn Sullivan is president of Empower Texans, which provides news and information to promote fiscal responsibility in the state government. In June, the ethics commission fined Sullivan $10,000 after finding that he is a paid lobbyist who failed to register in 2010 and 2011.
Sullivan plans to file an appeal in state court, said his attorney, Joseph Nixon of Beirne, Maynard & Parsons.
The commission explained that even if Sullivan performs some journalistic activities he does not qualify for the lobbyist registration statute's media exception because he does other work as well.