Ex-AIPAC staffer hit by Washington baseball scandal

washington | A former top fundraiser for AIPAC has been ordered to repay $70,000 in unauthorized expenses to a previous employer, a baseball political action committee.

When news of the scandal broke July 17 in the Washington Post, Neil Alpert had already given notice that he was leaving his job as national campaign director for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the pro-Israel lobby, for a post at the Republican Jewish Coalition, sources said.

After the revelation, the RJC and Alpert “mutually agreed” that he would not take the job, said the sources, who asked not to be identified.

Alpert could not be reached and the RJC declined comment.

The Post story said the District of Columbia Office of Campaign Finance had ordered Alpert to repay $37,760 in unauthorized personal expenses, including rent, meals and nightclubs, and $31,987 in unaccounted funds. It also charged him $4,000 in fines.

Alpert, 29, was chairman of the D.C. Baseball Political Action Committee, which existed until 2005, when Major League Baseball’s Nationals came to Washington. Two PAC members complained to the campaign finance regulator because they noted financial irregularities.

Alpert has denied any wrongdoing, the Campaign Finance report said. Alpert said he had submitted rent expenses because his office was the PAC’s headquarters, the Post reported.

It is unclear when Alpert joined AIPAC. He was listed as AIPAC’s national campaign director in a March 2007 newsletter of the Direct Marketing Association.

“He no longer works at AIPAC,” was all a spokesman for the pro-Israel lobby would say.

The complaint against Alpert was filed in August 2005. Sources said neither group was aware of the complaint.