(TheLibertyRevolution.com)- A liberal watchdog group has filed a lawsuit against the Federal Election Commission in response to the commission dropping a complaint that alleged Donald Trump’s 2020 presidential campaign coordinated with a super PAC unlawfully.
The lawsuit was filed by the Campaign Legal Center Action, on behalf of End Citizens United, a Democratic group. It challenges the decision that was made by GOP commissioners of the FEC to close their investigation into Trump’s campaign, in lieu of providing a reason for doing so.
In May 2019, the same groups filed a complaint with the FEC against Trump’s re-election committees. They did this after the former president’s campaign only had one “approved outside non-campaign group” to which supporters could donate — America First Action.
In their 2019 suit, the groups claimed the campaign solicited donations illegally to a super PAC that was closely tied to them. Career attorneys with the FEC recommended FEC commissioners to investigate the issue. But, it was ultimately blocked from any further inquiry by Republican commissioners who voted to ultimately dismiss it.
Now, the CLC Action group is asking the federal court system to force the FEC to investigate and formally determine whether the Trump re-election campaign violated any campaign finance laws with its actions.
In a statement, CLC Action’s chief of staff and senior director of trial litigation, Adav Noti, said:
“We should not have to sue the FEC repeatedly to make it do its job. Yet, here is another example of the FEC refusing to enforce key laws that protect the rights of American voters.”
The website OpenSecrets.org reported that the America First Action super PAC spent almost $139 million in an effort to get Trump re-elected in the 2020 presidential election.
The reason why CLC Action can even sue the FEC in the first place is because a strategy that has been imposed by Democratic commissioners of the FEC, which is blocked from defending itself in a court of law. Because of this, lawsuits can be filed against the commission that would then force the commissioners to respond to outside complaints, rather than dismissing them outright.
The FEC is often deadlocked because it’s made up of six members, and there can’t be more than three members on the panel from either political party. That means any real action must carry at least four votes, which doesn’t happen often.
Democrats have been trying to change this procedure significantly through their so-far-failed For the People Act. Buried in that wide-sweeping election bill is a rule that would restructure the FEC completely. It would reduce the number of members to five and prevent the commissioners from blocking any investigation at early stages.
Stricter laws would also be enacted that would govern all coordination between super PACs and political campaigns.
Democrats should be very careful about what they wish for, though, as many prominent candidates from the left have benefitted from their reliance on the financial contributions and influence of super PACs.