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May 17, 2024

Campaign Finance Roundup: May 17, 2024

Campaign Finance Roundup: May 17, 2024

May 17, 2024
Published By Connor Flotten
Another installment in our series of stories about how our elections are being bought out from under us and all that matters is fundraising and the donor class.

US crypto super PACs have raised more than $100 million, report says

From Reuters: 
It’s baaaack! As further evidence that we’ve been trapped in a time loop since 2020, crypto is back on the rise, as Super PACs linked to fake totally legitimate internet money have raised more than $102 million to spend on influencing elections this year (no idea how much that is in dogecoin). The groups have signaled that they’ll focus their spending on the Senate races in Ohio and Montana, showing an impressive amount of confidence that their assets will last all the way until November. 

Trump pressed oil executives to give $1 billion for his campaign, people in industry say

We’re not even pretending anymore, huh? At a meeting with several oil executives at Mar-a-Lago, Trump asked them to give a combined $1 billion to his campaign, as those executives are preparing a list of requests should he win re-election, including specific executive orders for him to sign. 

Honestly, I don’t think I can say anything more than the subheading to this article:

 “‘This is a scandal’ and ‘an indictment of the system’ — but probably legal, one legal watchdog told POLITICO.”

Really sums everything up. 

Biden Courts Wealthy Donors on West Coast Fund-Raising Trip

From the New York Times: 
Not to be outdone, Biden went on a fundraising tour on the West Coast, hitting up tech billionaires for more money. It’s been a reliable cash cow for him, with more than $21 million coming from California alone this cycle. One fundraising event featured tickets for up to $100,000, and while I’m sure meeting the president is cool and all, you could get a whole block of Taylor Swift tickets for that price. Priorities, people. 

Shell company steering $2.6 million to Republican PACs raises concerns of illicit funding scheme

From OpenSecrets:
A complaint filed with the FEC by the Campaign Legal Center alleges that a shell company was used to illegally send nearly $2.6 million to various Republican-backing political committees. The CLC notes that the company in question, Ardleigh Impact Corp., was incorporated in October 2023, and doesn’t have any of the things you might expect from a business, like “a website,” “a product,” or “revenue.” Despite this, the company managed to make $2.6 million in donations to large Republican-linked PACs. The article notes that federal campaign finance regulations make it illegal to make contributions under another name or corporate identity, but I can’t imagine why that would be relevant here. 

The gamble on unlimited campaign contributions is backfiring

From the Dallas Morning News:
This excellent op-ed by Matt Howerton, a political manager for American Promise, and Ann Drumm, the North Texas organizer for American Promise, lays out the case for how our current system of unlimited campaign contributions is failing, and has left legislators “vulnerable to the whims of wealthy individuals and special interests.” As they point out, it’s time for legislators to go back to listening to their constituents, not just their donors.  

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