Consumed with pursuing President Donald Trump and hopeful that they can bring an early end to his political career, Democrats are ignoring a colossal newsbreak.
A new lawsuit filed in D.C. district court by the Committee to Defend the President last week alleges that the Hillary Clinton campaign laundered $84 million through state and national Democratic Party offices in a scheme to violate campaign limits.
Dan Backer, a campaign-finance lawyer and attorney-of-record in the suit, said the Democrats “demonstrated massive straw man contributions papered through the state parties, to the DNC, and then directly to Clinton’s campaign — in clear violation of federal campaign-finance law.”
Backer, whose 86-page report documenting violations from Clinton and the DNC was ultimately ignored by Federal Election Commission (FEC) officials, explained in an article for Investors Business Daily that individual campaign donations are limited by the size and structure of the recipient.
“[A]n individual donor can contribute $2,700 to any candidate, $10,000 to any state party committee, and (during the 2016 cycle) $33,400 to a national party’s main account,” Backer wrote. “These groups can all get together and take a single check from a donor for the sum of those contribution limits—it’s legal because the donor cannot exceed the base limit for any one recipient. And state parties can make unlimited transfer to their national party.”
Although both Democrats and Republicans take advantage of a legal loophole that allows fundraisers to accept massive donations, often in excess of $400,000, from a single donor — so long as they are first filtered through state, national, and individual campaigns and committees. However, Backer explained in his FEC complaint, “extensive evidence in the Democrats’ own FEC reports” demonstrates that the Clinton campaign benefited from receiving massive contributions that were said to come from state party coffers and through the DNC straight to the Hillary Victory Fund (HVF) in 2015 and 2016.
But there was one problem: while the HVF would receive these large donations on the same day as the DNC received the funds from the state party representatives, the state Democratic committees had no records of these transfers.
The Federalist reporter Margot Cleveland provided a fitting example to illustrate HVF’s standard operating procedure: “HVF reported transferring $19,500 to the Mississippi Democratic Party on November 2, 2015, and the Democratic National Committee reported receiving $19,500 from the Mississippi Democratic Party on November 2, 2015. But the Mississippi Democratic Party never recorded the receipt or the disbursement of the $19,500, and without the Mississippi Democratic Party controlling the funds, the HVF’s contribution to the DNC violated campaign finance law.”
The Clinton campaign and DNC effectively leap-frogged the state party apparatus on at least 30 occasions over a 13-month span, raking in at least $10 million in illegal campaign contributions. Incidentally, 99 percent of the funds that the state committees received from HFV ended up back with the DNC after a day or two, implying that states were forced to relinquish control to the DNC and Clinton.
According to Politico, “one operative who has relationships with multiple state parties said that some of their officials have complained that they weren’t notified of the transfers into and out of their accounts until after the fact.”
As former DNC chairwoman Donna Brazile explained when she blew the whistle on campaign finance fraud within the party, “[a]s Hillary’s campaign gained momentum, she resolved the party’s debt and put it on a starvation diet. It had become dependent on her campaign for survival, for which she expected to wield control of its operations.”
Break glass in case of emergency
With that, it appears that Clinton used the DNC as a clearinghouse for her campaign, even before she’d won the DNC’s nomination, and sucking state committees dry in the process.
While a Supreme Court ruling from 2014 makes it explicitly clear that the DNC-HVP stunt was a blatant violation of finance law, FEC commissioners have failed to take action due to an archaic bipartisan power-sharing agreement. However, to bypass Democrats refusal to name an FEC commissioner, thus moving forward with FEC litigation, FEC Vice Chair Ellen Weintraub noted that Congress foresaw this obstructive scenario.
“Fire alarms are sometimes housed in boxes labeled ‘Break glass in case of emergency,’” Weintraub observed. In this case, the “fire alarm” is a provision in the Federal selections Campaign Act that allows complainants to sue directly when the FEC fails to resolve their issues.
Backer and the Committee to Defend the President are doing just that by taking HVP to court. Hopefully, when Clinton’s crimes are enumerated in a court of law, the media will finally take notice.