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GOP group to raise unlimited cash to keep House majority
Question of the Day
Now, longtime party leaders appear to have decided to bring the outside operation in-house. The new fund’s top staff mirrors that of the Action Network, including Mr. Coleman. Mr. Walsh will head both groups.
Increasingly, single sets of operators have overseen linked groups operating under different sections of the tax and political systems in order to take advantage of differing and sometimes contradictory regulations.
The AAN once shared office space with American Crossroads, a super-PAC that spent $22 million in the last election cycle, along with its similarly named affiliate, which is registered as a nonprofit.
“Evading the spirit of campaign finance laws involves this illusion of pretending to wear different hats,” said Mr. Wonderlich.
The American Action Network and American Action Forum are such multipronged groups.
“There’s three things: You have the 501c(3), which solicits money for policy research. The advocacy arm, American Action Forum, is to generate citizen activism around issues. Now the Congressional Leadership Fund is a political action committee dedicated to supporting candidates,” Mr. Walsh said.
The timing of the announcement highlighted a disclosure problem. House candidates will disclose who funded their campaigns in the quarter ending September by Saturday, and party committees like the NRCC report monthly. But super-PACs, which can choose to itemize their finances only twice per year, can avoid making such disclosures.
In the presidential sphere, where most major candidates have super-PACs aligned with them — often staffed by former campaign officials — a similar problem is emerging. The question of super-PACs adds a further element of chaos to Republican primaries as states have bested one another by moving up primary dates.
On Wednesday, New Hampshire’s secretary of state said Dec. 6 would be a “realistic option.” In such a case, voters determining the crucial outcome of the early primary could have no clue who had bankrolled massive advertising campaigns dedicated to influencing the outcome for nearly six months.
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About the Author
Luke Rosiak is a projects reporter on The Washington Times’ investigative team. He formerly covered lobbying and campaign finance for two watchdog groups as well as transportation for The Washington Post. Luke can be reached at email@example.com.
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