Join the Christopher Ward Club, and Don't Be Sorry

By Mary Ann Akers And Paul Kane
Thursday, March 20, 2008

Last Thursday, the National Republican Congressional Committee accused its former treasurer, Christopher Ward, of diverting at least "several hundred thousand dollars" from its coffers into his personal accounts and of faking outside audits to help cover his tracks.

But on March 4, nine days before the NRCC dropped its bombshell, Christopher Ward filed an amended report with the Federal Election Commission that began with a note offering "apologies for this error in totals."

Clairvoyance? Getting out ahead of the posse?

Nope. The apologetic Ward is Christopher M. Ward, and he works for the San Diego Democratic Club. The accused Ward is Christopher J. Ward, and so far he hasn't apologized for anything or commented on the NRCC's charges.

Christopher M. Ward laughed at the long odds that he would file his financial report right before the NRCC announcement, but said his name is pretty common.

"My quick history is nothing as exciting as Christopher J. Ward's, though," Ward wrote in an e-mail.

A 2006 graduate of Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, Christopher M. Ward said he has worked for environmental groups in Southern California and has helped with their political activities.

The world of political treasurers and compliance officers is so small that even officials at the Federal Election Commission mistook the California Ward's work for the allegedly fraudulent filings of the Ward here in Washington. Last week, FEC officials mistakenly forwarded to The Post committee filings that the California Ward worked on, suggesting that they might be part of the other Ward's web of committees.

The FEC also discovered another Ward namesake -- Christopher O. Ward-- who has been a treasurer for political committees in New York.

The partisan in Christopher M. Ward was not displeased to see the NRCC suffering from his namesake's alleged actions.

"They had it coming," he wrote. "And at a time where they are having trouble raising funds and nearly broke, as a Democrat, it makes the story even sweeter."

Vote-a-Rama Record?

Senators and staff are still recovering from the record-setting blizzard of votes held last Thursday as part of the annual tradition known as "vote-a-rama": the series of amendments on the budget resolution that are voted on consecutively.

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