Opinion| As you read this keep in mind a paragraph from a Politico article on how Democrats dodge campaign finance law:
Coordination between campaigns and outside groups is illegal, though both parties’ election lawyers regularly give candidates a green light to evade that ban by sharing information in the public domain — for example, posting long YouTube clips clearly meant for use by friendly super PACs. Now, McCaskill and other Democratic senators are pushing the limits by essentially posting instruction manuals on how they prefer allied groups to attack their opponents, which super PACs have then turned into ads within a matter of days or weeks.
So candidates lawyers give them the go ahead because proving coordination in a circumstance where a candidate simply posts information would make every candidate guilty of coordinating.
Actual evidence of direct coordination – emails, meetings, phone conversation, etc – between the candidate, their campaign and the PAC is necessary.
Well, that human sledgehammer from New York, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, has gone even beyond that. For AOC, no communications were necessary because … wait for this … she and her campaign controlled the PAC!
Here’s the pertinent paragraph of the law:
The entire law can be read here.
And, a since deleted page from Justice Democrats website last March said:
Saikat Chakrabarti was AOC’s campaign chairman. He currently serves as her chief of staff.
Of course a private website can make any claims with impunity. Declarations on federal filings carry legal liability.
A March 28, 2018 filing by Justice Democrats, submitted to the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, declared both Chakrabarti and Ocasio-Cortez two of the three governors of the PAC.
A governor of an organization incorporated in D.C. is defined as any person “under whose authority the powers of an entity are exercised and under whose direction the activities and affairs of the entity are managed.”
Even after AOC won her primary the Justice Democrats’ website continued to state that Ocasio-Cortez and Chakrabarti held “legal control over the entity” according to a report by the Daily Caller.
While the website has since been changed to identify new governors, the PAC’s federal filings remain unchanged.
That coordination existed cannot be denied, unless you want to believe that the left half of AOC’s brain does not work in coordination with her right half.
With coordination between the two entities – Ocasio-Cortez campaign and Justice Democrats – now established what were the violations that occurred as a result.
For that we turn to 52 U.S. Code § 30109 – Enforcement governing Federal Election Campaigns:
According to research by the Daily Caller News Foundation. FEC records show:
Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign and Justice Democrats raised a combined $4.6 million during the 2018 midterm election cycle.
The DCNF went on to note:
Justice Democrats raked in far more than $25,000 from individual contributors of over $2,700 after Ocasio-Cortez and Chakrabarti took control.