House Hopeful Pleads Ignorance to Financial Disclosure Rules

Former Real World star Kevin Powell skirted financial disclosure rules in New York primaries.

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WASHINGTON - Welcome to the Real World, Kevin Powell.

Powell, a former star of the MTV reality show and a second-time primary challenger to Rep. Ed Towns (D-Brooklyn), has taken more than three years to figure out House rules require him to file personal financial disclosures. [See who donates the most money to Towns.]

A review of House records found no disclosures from Powell in 2008 or 2010. This year's deadline was May 15.

Powell, who has cast himself as a new breed of politician who would clean up the messes of people like embattled Harlem Rep. Charles Rangel, told the Daily News Tuesday he did not know he had to file such forms in 2008.

He said this year he sought an extension, and mailed the forms at least three weeks ago; however, a fresh search of records Wednesday still revealed no disclosures.

And he also was not included on the list of candidates who sought extensions.

"My treasurer reached out to them after we talked yesterday [Tuesday], and what they said is that it takes a few days to a few weeks to process," Powell said yesterday.

"We did our due diligence," he added, though he admitted to blowing the deadline.

As far as never filing in the 2008 contest, Powell blamed his handlers. "We had a big-time consulting firm charging us a lot of money, and they missed a lot of things," he said.

Powell has been highly critical recently of the ethics-challenged Rangel, arguing he and Towns are cut from the same cloth. Towns was not impressed by Powell's arguments on disclosure.

"This guy has sort of stepped out of bounds on the law all along," Towns charged. "There's a lot of questions about him."

Towns' campaign is trying to block Powell from the September primary ballot, claiming his petition signatures are fraudulent.