Republicans really aren’t enthusiastic about many of the campaign finance laws and they aren’t big on sending people to jail over it. However, Democrats are but they use loopholes in campaign finance law whenever they can. It’s a bit hypocritical. In any case, we have one example of exactly that from Democrat Michael Bloomberg, former mayor of New York City.
Republicans have asked the FEC to close a loophole that allowed Bloomberg to send $18 million in personal funds to the Democratic National Committee. It’s way past the amount allowed by an individual. However, these personal funds were money he used to finance his campaign for president. He transferred them from his campaign.
That is very sleazy.
Citizens United made the request.
The petition states that “since 1980, the Federal Elections Campaign Act has allowed candidates for federal office to transfer surplus funds to their official campaign accounts to national, state or local party committees without limitation.”
The filing notes that contributions in the past were not from personal accounts.
“Last month, however, a major loophole came to light,” the petition reads.
Citizens United then refers to Bloomberg’s transfer of $18 million of “surplus” campaign funds to the DNC. The billionaire and former New York City mayor announced the transfer shortly after suspending his presidential campaign.
“Those funds, however, were not made up of contributions from sources subject to FECA’s contribution limits, but were instead derived from the candidate’s personal funds, which are not subject to any contribution limits,” Citizens United says in the petition. “While Bloomberg’s transfer may fall within the letter of the regulation governing transfers of candidate funds to national political party committees, it certainly does not fall within the spirit of the law.”
Citizens United adds that “the Bloomberg transfer appears to be the first time that a candidate has transferred funds derived entirely from his or her personal funds in an amount that far exceeds the amounts that the candidate could directly contribute to a national party committee.”
If this stands, it’s a major loophole and does not conform to the intent of the law although that doesn’t stop people like him trying to circumvent the law they themselves insisted upon.