McCain still scamming public finance system

This is rich. The McCain campaign has been relentless in its criticism of Obama for not using the public campaign financing system. No one really cares besides the McCain campaign and McCain-loving pundits like David Broder.

You may recall that McCain scammed the system during the primaries. Today, both the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times provide us insight into how the McCain campaign is pushing the limits of the very laws that McCain claims to champion.

According to the WSJ McCain is using “loopholes” to scrounge up more money:

When he accepted $84.1 million in public funding for his campaign, Sen. McCain agreed to not raise or spend any other money. But the law allows him to create what’s called a “compliance fund” to pay for legal fees associated with complying with campaign finance rules.

Both President George W. Bush and John Kerry created similar funds in 2004. But Sen. McCain is using his to an unprecedented degree. In 2004, Messrs. Bush and Kerry each spent about $2 million from their funds before Election Day.

On Monday night, Sen. McCain reported spending $2.4 million in September alone. In September 2004, both candidates spent less than $500,000.

The bulk of Sen. McCain’s expenditures were to pick up part of the tab for television and radio ads — the first time a candidate has been allowed to do that before an election.

Maybe it’s technically legal, but isn’t John McCain the guy who is supposed to be purer than pure on campaign finance? Can’t wait to read the column from Broder chastising McCain for violating the spirit of the law. There’s even more. According to the New York Times, McCain is also pushing the limits with large donors:

The joint fund-raising committees have been utilized far more heavily this presidential election than in the past. Mr. Obama’s campaign has leaned on wealthy benefactors to contribute up to $33,100 at a time to complement his army of small donors over the Internet as he bypassed public financing for the general election. More than 600 donors contributed $25,000 or more to him in September alone, roughly three times the number who did the same for Senator John McCain.

And Mr. McCain’s campaign, which had not disclosed most of these donors until last week, has taken the concept to new levels, encouraging deep-pocketed supporters to write checks of more than $70,000, by adding state parties as beneficiaries of his fund-raising.

Next time McCain or one of his spinners whines about Obama and money, they need to be reminded of the way the McCain campaign is abusing the current system. McCain knows the campaign finance laws so well, he’s managed to abuse them at a whole new level.

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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