Saturday, December 20, 2003

Abolish the FEC

It has long been known that the FEC is too partisan to be effective. The case with Ashcroft is a perfect example. Besides the fact that it took three years to come to conclusion, it shows that the partisan split can essentially stop any inquiry that is unwanted.

But when in the end there is just a fine, what is the incentive to play by the rules? Here Aschroft raises over $100,000 illegally, but only has to pay $37,000!! So the message is clear, if you are going to violate campaign finance laws, be sure and exploit it as much as you can so that you can pay any fine that might be imposed later.

It is a great example of the farce of Washington politics.

"Ellen L. Weintraub, chairwoman of the FEC, said she and the other two Democrats on the panel did not have the required four votes to carry a motion to interview Ashcroft. In addition, she said, all the commissioners did not want to be seen as 'harassing the attorney general of the United States' and so never sought to question him. On Tuesday, the FEC announced a "conciliation agreement" under which the complaint was settled when the Spirit of America PAC and Ashcroft 2000 agreed to pay a $37,000 fine for what the FEC said was $112,000 in illegal contributions to the Senate campaign committee.
Ashcroft Not Queried On Campaign Funds (

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