I'm John Ryan from the organization Common Cause, and I started a petition to the Federal Election Commission, which says:
It appears that some 2016 presidential hopefuls are defying campaign finance laws and raising huge sums of money through Super PACs, 527s, and other political committees disguised as sham nonprofits, by claiming they're not candidates or even "testing the waters."
Governor Jeb Bush's Right To Rise Super PAC has set a fundraising goal of $100 million, but hasn't said what for (I wonder!).1
Meanwhile, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker bragged at an event in Iowa: "You know, the process tells us that legally we have to say we are 'exploring,' because the minute you say something else, a whole series of things happen. So as we 'explore,' we will come back many more times."2
Supposedly, they're just private citizens raising millions and millions of dollars in donations. More likely, their real goal is to dodge contribution limits, coordination restrictions, and disclosure requirements meant to prevent corruption—all while positioning themselves to launch their presidential campaigns.
This kind of unrestricted money has no place in our democracy. Tell the Federal Election Commission to investigate Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, and any other potential candidates for violations of campaign finance laws leading up to their formal announcements.
1. "Why Jeb Bush isn't running for president," CNN, May 1, 2015
2. "When a tire literally came off, Gov. Scott Walker's one overnight stay in Dubuque," Journal Sentinel, March 8, 2015
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