Houston mayoral candidate loans money to campaign, charges usurious interest rate

Political candidates loan themselves money all the time.

Indeed, mayoral candidate Peter Brown has surged into the lead in Houston's mayoral race largely based on media buys made possible by the large amounts of money he has loaned his campaign.

And then there are lesser candidates who loan themselves money.

At usurious interest rates.

The current prime interest rate (as of posting) is 3.25%.

Roy Morales
As per the most recent local campaign finance filings, mayoral candidate Roy Morales loaned his campaign the relatively minor sum (as Houston mayoral campaigns go) of $927.86

Morales is charging his campaign 15% interest on that loan.

It's not the first time candidate Morales has charged his campaign usurious interest rates.

In 2007, he loaned his campaign a truly minor sum (as local campaigns go): $100.

He charged his campaign 23% interest!

In contrast, Peter Brown has not charged his campaign any interest on the considerable loans in this campaign.

We have no idea why any candidate (even a marginal one) would charge usurious interest rates for relatively small amounts of money, so we will crowdsource this one. What do you think?

UPDATE (10-20-2009): David Jennings obtained an explanation from the Morales campaign.


All campaign finance references courtesy of the CoH searchable campaign finance database. We've checked, doublechecked, and triplechecked our figures, but always welcome extra eyes. Unlike the Chronicle, we make prompt corrections.

Roy Morales screencap courtesy Roy Morales campaign website.

Posted by Kevin Whited @ 10/19/09 11:11 PM | Print |

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