- Oct 25, 2017
Campaign Legal Center, the nonprofit that filed the documents with the FEC, claims this is a direct violation of campaign finance law, which requires campaign and party committees to report all their spending.
“The DNC and Hillary for America reported dozens of payments totaling millions of dollars to the law firm Perkins Coie with the purpose described as ‘Legal Services’ or ‘Legal and Compliance Consulting,’ when in reality, at least some of those payments were earmarked for the firm Fusion GPS, with the purpose of conducting opposition research on Donald Trump,” the complaint says.
“By failing to file accurate reports, the DNC and Hillary for America undermined the vital public information role that reporting is intended to serve.”
- Oct 25, 2017
A subsidiary of GEO Group contributed $225,000 to the pro-Trump super PAC Rebuilding America Now — including $125,000 about a week before the election, according to campaign finance reports.
The watchdog group Campaign Legal Center filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission about the contributions, arguing that they violated a long-standing ban on donations by federal contractors.
- Oct 24, 2017
Adav Noti, a former FEC associate general counsel who now works for the nonprofit watchdog Campaign Legal Center, said in an interview that he had dealt with the Virgin Islands group and Mackenzie as an FEC official, and that in his opinion, “They are a scam PAC.”
“Scott Mackenzie has a number of scam PACs,” Noti said. “He was probably the first, or one of the first, with the idea of bilking people out of money through PACs. People are being defrauded, and that needs to stop.”
- Oct 24, 2017
It would be easy for him to start a 501(c)(4) for that purpose, according to Adav Noti, the senior director for trial litigation and strategy at the Campaign Legal Center. But it would be difficult to tell if he had started a 501(c)(4) without knowing the name of the organization or where it was based. "If he is not running, he can use the money to start a (c)(4)," Noti said. "If he’s not running, he can do whatever he wants with it."
If by some stretch of the imagination he does end up running, he’ll have to report profits from the web store stretching back to July, regardless of any announcement, Noti said.
LA Times: Kevin De León has millions in state political accounts that he can't use for U.S. Senate campaignOct 23, 2017
Federal law restricts contributions by candidates to super PACs that support them with an eye toward making sure each committee keeps “its independence, which is required by law,” said Corey Goldstone, a spokesman for the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center based in Washington.
- Oct 23, 2017
Lawrence Noble, senior director and general counsel of the Campaign Legal Center, a nonpartisan research and litigation group specializing in elections, praised language in the bill that would require online platforms to make all reasonable efforts to ensure that foreign individuals and entities aren’t buying political advertising to influence American voters.
Noble said the language would provide data that could be used by candidates, parties or even private individuals to investigate suspicious ads. He said the proposal would keep in place the allowance for charities such as so-called 501(c)(4) groups to keep donors confidential, a provision that would enable groups to receive foreign funds and use it to buy political advertising without identifying the foreign donors.
“If questions arise about whether the 501(c)(4) is a front for foreign funding, that’s another issue,” said Noble, former general counsel of the Federal Election Commission. “But this bill provides a tool — with the public file — to at least know who is buying the ad and so you can begin to look into any allegations that the buyer is a front for foreign money.”
- Oct 21, 2017
Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore is apparently still misrepresenting his income and assets, according to the findings of an investigation into the GOP member’s personal finances.
In response, non-partisan public interest watchdog, the Campaign Legal Center (“CLC”), filed a letter with the Senate Ethics Committee yesterday afternoon amending a prior ethics complaint leveled against Moore for his alleged financial improprieties.
According to the amended complaint, Moore failed to disclose a promissory note of $540,000 made out to him by his own charity, the Foundation for Moral Law. The promissory note was apparently provided to Moore in lieu of certain payment obligations the foundation was unable to meet when Moore served as its president from 2007-2012.
- Oct 20, 2017
Meredith McGehee, said increasing disclosures is the best way to fight foreign interference in elections. She said the Honest Ads Act is “a good faith effort to get that conversation started,” adding that it’s important to make online political spending more transparent.
“Listeners are entitled to know by whom they are being persuaded, and that from the radio days has applied,” McGehee said. “And there is no reason it shouldn’t apply for online platforms.”
- Oct 20, 2017
"The note must be disclosed separately because it is a distinct asset from the mortgage that backs it," the Campaign Legal Center wrote to the Senate Ethics Committe. "For example, depending on the value of the FML building in an ever-fluctuating housing market, and depending on the outstanding amount of the building's first mortgage--which, as of 2014, was valued at $500,00012--it is possible that the second mortgage alone will fail to net Moore its full value. However, the promissory note nonetheless guarantees that Moore is entitled to the entire $540,000 from FML, regardless of the underlying value of the mortgage."
- Oct 20, 2017
“You can see how a person like Ayers, who has a longtime relationship with Pence, would work for the Trump campaign without compensation,” said Brendan Fischer of the nonpartisan watchdog group Campaign Legal Center.
Still, he added, Ayers “would be pretty well extended while working for those three campaigns at once.”