In a letter sent to its members, NICHE President Justin LaVan said the Bachmann campaign uploaded the list “without our knowledge or permission,” and used it “twice for emails from her campaign.”
The report did not say how the list was obtained or who was responsible, but noted that NICHE board member Barb Heki, who oversees communications for the group, is also a member of Bachmann’s Iowa campaign team.
According to LaVan’s letter, the Bachmann campaign told NICHE that the events were “inadvertent,” and said it has completely deleted the list from its database.
Still, the campaign will have to make financial restitution to NICHE for the two emails it sent to the group list.
“Due to federal legal issues surrounding unauthorized use, NICHE is forced to take several steps to rectify this situation,” LaVan wrote in the letter. “Because the Bachmann Campaign did receive the benefit of two emails to the contacts on our list — even though NICHE did not authorize this use in any way — we now must require the Bachmann Campaign to pay for the reasonable value of that usage.”
In addition, legal requirements mandate NICHE give equal opportunity to the other candidates to “pay for two similar emails to the contacts on the NICHE list.”
NICHE does not support or endorse any political candidates.