I don’t expect the media to pay much attention to this, except maybe Maddow and Hayes, because if Hillary Clinton gets bucks for a charity it’s huge, but how candidates raise money for their campaigns and how they use them, well, that’s just getting into the weeds. Right? The last thing the GOP really wants is more publicity for how, and from whom, they raise actual campaign cash from, but fine, be that way.
This story about how Jeb Bush is planning to use his Right to Rise PAC, with which he cannot legally coordinate his campaign with in any way, is really interesting. The entire mishegas of these super PACs is a joke effort to walk a wire. The candidate raises unlimited money from anonymous donors for said PAC, which it can spend practically any way it chooses, but it cannot coordinate its efforts with the actual campaign or any party campaign. So the super PAC hires cronies of the candidate who can completely work for his benefit, (wink, wink)
intuiting knowing what the campaign and the candidate want and need (wink, wink).
Jeb Bush plans to openly push the envelope on all the winking and nodding and dance on that wire like nobody’s watching. (Is anybody watching?)
“Nothing like this has been done before,” said David Keating, president of the Center for Competitive Politics, which opposes limits on campaign finance donations. “It will take a high level of discipline to do it.”
“In our view, we are headed for an epic national scandal,” said Fred Wertheimer, president of the pro-regulation group Democracy 21. “We intend to carefully and closely monitor all the candidates and their super PACs, because they will eventually provide numerous examples of violations.”
But the agency that should be monitoring this has been in limbo for some time.
Critics also believe that coordination can take place surreptitiously, and such illegal activity isn’t punished by an FEC comprised of three Democratic and three Republican members unable to agree on almost anything. Last year, the FEC found only 16 violations of campaign finance law and leveled just $200,000 in fines — a record low for recent years.
“It’s up to only the Justice Department, because the FEC for all practical purposes … will not enforce the law,” Wertheimer said.