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From Fox business news:
PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ — The DNC announced today that it will file a complaint with the FEC against John McCain’s campaign Monday, calling on the FEC to investigate whether the McCain campaign violated or is about to violate the law by ignoring the spending limit agreement and other conditions Senator McCain agreed to when he became eligible to receive federal matching funds. According to McCain’s latest campaign filing, he has already spent $49.6 million and given that a month has passed, he has exceeded or is about to exceed the approximately $56.8 million spending limit.
“The crucial issue here is John McCain’s integrity. John McCain poses as a reformer but seems to think reforms apply to everyone but him,” said Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean. “He used taxpayer money to guarantee a loan so he could raise money from lobbyists and special interests — it’s the height of hypocrisy. This is just the latest example of his do as I say, not as I do double standard, and it’s unlikely to be the last. McCain financially benefited from this legally binding contract — he got free ballot access, saving him millions of dollars, and he secured a $4 million line of credit to keep his campaign afloat by using public financing as collateral. He should follow the law.”
The McCain campaign has incorrectly stated that McCain is doing what Dean did when he withdrew from public financing in his presidential bid, but they have the facts wrong. Dean did not use the promise of matching funds as collateral for a loan. Dean withdrew before the FEC determined eligibility for funds, unlike McCain. And he spent millions of dollars to get his name on the ballot after withdrawing, unlike McCain, who had free ballot access in many states because he pledged to accept matching funds.
In order to receive matching funds, John McCain signed a binding agreement with the FEC to accept spending limits and to abide by the conditions of receiving those funds. The FEC makes clear that any request to withdraw from the agreement must be granted by the FEC. In other words, McCain can’t just unilaterally withdraw. FEC Chairman David Mason made this clear in a letter to McCain advising him that the law requires the FEC to approve his request to withdraw from his contract.
According to past Commission rulings, the McCain campaign would not be allowed to withdraw from matching funds because it has already violated a key condition for being let out of the program — pledging matching funds as collateral for a private loan. McCain obtained a $4 million line of credit — drew $2,971,697 from it — and documents make clear that the promise of public financing was used to secure his loan.
In the complaint, the DNC says “the Commission should (1) find reason to believe, pursuant to 2 U.S.C. Section 437g(a)(2), that Senator John McCain and the McCain Campaign have committed, or are about to commit, a violation of Chapter 96 of Title 26 and of the Commission’s rules, and should conduct an investigation; and (2) pursuant to 26 U.S.C. Section 9040(c), petition the appropriate U.S. District Court for injunctive relief to implement and enforce the provisions of Chapter 96 against Senator McCain and the McCain Campaign.”
A copy of the DNC’s complaint will be available Monday once it’s filed.
Paid for and authorized by the Democratic National Committee, www.democrats.org. This communication is not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.
SOURCE Democratic National Committee
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