- Calif. tourist community evacuated over suspected explosive device
- Obama to use executive seat to push private companies onto solar
- ‘X-Men’ director Bryan Singer accused of sexually abusing a boy
- Tennessee ammunition site explodes, killing 1
- U.N.: Iran cuts stock closest to nuke-arms grade
- Oklahoma gay-marriage case before U.S. appeals court
- Times wins two awards from Society for Professional Journalists
- Marionville mayor ‘kind of agreed’ with Kansas City shooter’s views
- Rev. Al Sharpton’s Easter message: Politically ‘crucified’ Obama has risen again
- Supreme Court to weigh challenge to ban on campaign lies
FEC pressed to probe Dish TV chief
Complaint claims he ‘compelled’ giving to Democrats
A watchdog group wants federal election regulators to investigate whether the head of a major satellite-television company forced company executives to donate to prominent Democratic campaigns in recent years.
Citing an "insider" source, the nonprofit Cause of Action filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission late Wednesday asking investigators to look into whether Dish Network's chairman threatened executives with the loss of their jobs if they refused to donate to favored candidates.
The complaint, made public on Thursday, said the watchdog had received information from a source it did not identify that Dish executives, including Chief Operating Officer Bernard Han, were being "compelled" to make political donations by the company's chairman, Charles Ergen.
"The insider explained that Ergen insinuated to Han that 'you still have your job,' but would suffer consequences if he failed to follow Ergen's orders."
The complaint also said that executives were contributing in ways that closely aligned donations from the company's political action committee, "potentially indicating that the executives were forced to contribute to whatever fund the corporate PAC chose."
Recipients of the donations included the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, as well as individual campaigns for politicians such as Democratic Reps. Diana DeGette of Colorado and Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, who chairs the Democratic National Committee.
Bob Toevs, a spokesman for Dish, disputed the complaint in a statement Thursday to The Washington Times.
"The allegations in the complaint are untrue and completely unfounded," he said.
The request for the Dish investigation came on the same day that two other watchdog groups — the Campaign Legal Center and Democracy 21 — pressed the FEC to investigate what they said were potential campaign-finance violations tied to a political action committee called FreedomWorks for America.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Jim McElhatton is an investigative reporter for The Washington Times. He can be reached at email@example.com.
- HHS nominee Sylvia Burwell entangled in MetLife lawsuit
- HHS nominee got $1.2M at 'zero' salary job at Wal-Mart
- Federal workers watch 'Star Trek' on clock
- Sen. Menendez pal Salomon Melgen collected $20 million from Medicare
- U.S. picks up $700 million tab for coalition's food and laundry in Afghanistan
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By John R. Bolton
Reality calls for attaching Gaza to Egypt and the West Bank to Jordan
- 'Culture of intimidation' seen in Nevada ranch standoff
- IRS emails reveal discussion with Justice about suing nonprofits for election activities
- With pot and e-cigarettes, Big Tobacco is just waiting to inhale emerging markets
- Rand and Ron Paul ride to the rescue for Bundy in Nevada standoff with feds
- Removal of military gear limits options for U.S., NATO in Ukraine
- FISHER: Shades of Berlin in the South China Sea
- CNN op-ed claims right-wingers 'more deadly than jihadists'
- CURL: The state of the Union worse than you thought
- Atheists rush to stage Easter display: 'Jesus Christ is a myth'
- DEAN: Team Obama: President Putin's pawns
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.