March 18, 2014

Last Week at the FEC: Dismissal of Co-Publishing Complaint

Holland & Knight Eyes on Washington Blog
Andy Emerson

Last week the Federal Election Commission met in executive session on Tuesday, March 11, but did not meet in open session. During the week the Commission made public the results of one Matter Under Review (MUR) and three other campaign finance enforcement matters resulting in the assessment of civil penalties.

Deadlock and Dismissal of Book Buying Complaint

The Commission made public the results of MUR 6638, Todd Long for Congress (2010), in which the Commission voted to dismiss a complaint alleging that while running for Congress in 2010, Mr. Long misappropriated campaign funds by buying books from a company with which he had previously entered into a co-publishing agreement on an individual basis.

The Commission initially deadlocked along party lines on a vote to find reason to believe that Mr. Long had violated 52 U.S.C. §439(a) and 11 C.F.R. §113.1(g) by making personal expenditures with campaign funds. Subsequently, Commissioner Ravel joined the Republican-appointed Commissioners to adopt a revised factual and legal analysis and to dismiss allegations of wrongdoing on Mr. Long's part.

Administrative Fines Imposed for Late Filings

The Commission released the results of three Administrative fine cases related to reports that where either not filed or filed late. In AF 2761, the Polish American Leadership PAC was assessed a $4,950 penalty after failing to file its July 31, 2013 report on a timely basis and thereby failing to report $136,578 in activity.

In AF 2620 and AF 2717, John Hernandez for Congress (2012) was fined for filing a pre-election report seven days late and failing to file a year end report that was due on December 31, 2012. The Committee was assessed a $250 fine after $28,323 of activity for its late filing and an additional $990, which was subsequently lowered to $250 due to reduced activity, for its failure to file a year-end closeout report.  

Meeting Schedule

The Commission is scheduled to meet in open session on Tuesday, March 18, and in executive session on Thursday, March 20.  During its open session the Commission is slated to consider Draft Advisory Opinion 2014-01, regarding the proposed use of funds from a dormant account by the Solano County United Democratic Central Committee.

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