Home / America / Citing Dark Money Fears, Coalition Raises Alarm Over ‘Zombie’ FEC During Pivotal 2020 Elections

Citing Dark Money Fears, Coalition Raises Alarm Over ‘Zombie’ FEC During Pivotal 2020 Elections

“It is beyond belief that in this presidential year of enormous consequence, the nation’s campaign finance enforcement agency is defunct.”

A coalition of progressive groups on Monday urged President Donald Trump and Senate leaders to reconvene the Federal Elections Commission with a full slate of members committed to enforcing campaign finance laws in time for the 2020 general election with a full slate of members committed to enforcing campaign finance laws.

The coalition of 21 organizations—including the Campaign Legal Center (CLC), Public Citizen, Common Cause, Democracy 21, and CREW—called on the White House and Senate to appoint commissioners with an interest in enforcement in an open letter

President Donald J. Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20500

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The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Majority Leader United States Senate
317 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

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The Honorable Charles Schumer
Minority Leader United States Senate
322 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

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The Honorable Roy Blunt
Chairman Committee on Rules & AdministrationUnited States Senate
260 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

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The Honorable Amy Klobuchar
Ranking Member Committee on Rules & Administration United States Senate
425 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

“To stop the explosion of secret election spending by wealthy special interests, the practice of nominating FEC Commissioners who carry water for those interests must end,” CLC senior director and chief of staff Adav Noti said in a statement announcing the letter.

The @FEC has a very important job — upholding the integrity of our elections. And it is failing to do so.

It is critical that the FEC’s quorum be restored as soon as possible. But we must not install six new commissioners who oppose campaign finance laws. https://campaignlegal.org/update/clc-led-coalition-urges-restoration-fec-quorum …

CLC-Led Coalition Urges Restoration of FEC Quorum

To stop the explosion of secret election spending by wealthy special interests, the FEC must have a quorum to protect the integrity of our elections.

campaignlegal.org

The coalition’s missive was sent in response to a letter from January 6 written by 31 campaign finance attorneys calling on the FEC to immediately instate six commissioners to allow the body to continue its work.

Concerns over the issues presented in the election by a hamstrung FEC are not new. Common Dreams reported that advocates were last August warning of the problems to the election presented by the FEC’s lack of quorum.

“It is beyond belief that in this presidential year of enormous consequence, the nation’s campaign finance enforcement agency is defunct because it does not have enough commissioners for a quorum to take action to enforce the laws,” Democracy 21 founder and president Fred Wertheimer said Monday.

In November, Center for Public Integrity editor-at-large Dave Levinthal noted that the lack of quorum would become a major problem if the FEC “zombie-walks into the teeth of Election 2020.”

As of Monday, the FEC has been without a quorum for 135 days, said political advocacy group Issue One.

It’s now been 135 days since the @FEC lost its quorum and effectively shut down. It’s unable to hold hearings, enforce existing rules, and fine violators ahead of the 2020 election. That’s a problem. Visit http://fecmia.com  for ways to repair our nation’s election watchdog.

“It is imperative to get the campaign finance cop back on the beat as this nation enters what promises to be the most expensive election in history,” Public Citizen government affairs lobbyist Craig Holman said in a statement. “But it is just as important that we get a functional campaign finance cop on the beat.”

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