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For Immediate Release
November 4, 2004
Contact: Kelly Huff
Bob Biersack
Ian Stirton
George Smaragdis

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Election Commission has recently made public its final action on a matter previously under review (MURs). This release contains only disposition information.

1. MUR 5400  

(a)   LaRouche Watch

(b)   Red Letter Press and Helen Gilbert, registered agent

Barbara M. Boyd

  SUBJECT: Failure to register and report, excessive contributions, corporate contribution, fraudulent misrepresentation

(a-b)   No reason to believe*

  [re: any provision of the Act]

  The complaint alleged that LaRouche Watch, an internet chat group, was formed for the purpose of infiltrating and harassing LaRouche's presidential campaign, expended more than $1,000 on such activities and its failure to register or file with the Commission as a political committee places it in violation of the FECA. The complaint also points to the LaRouche Watch link to Red Letter Press, a Washington state corporation, and asserts that it subsidized LaRouche Watch, violating the corporate ban on contributions to political committees. The Commission found no reason to believe that LaRouche Watch qualified as a political committee and therefore was not required to register and report with the Commission. The Commission found no reason to believe that Red Letter Press made a corporate contribution to LaRouche Watch.
  DOCUMENTS ON PUBLIC RECORD: Documents from these matters are available from the Commission's web site at http://eqs.sdrdc.com/eqs/searcheqs by entering 5400 under case number. They are also available in the FECs Public Records Office at 999 E St. NW in Washington.

*There are four administrative stages to the FEC enforcement process:

1. Receipt of proper complaint 3. "Probable cause" stage
2. "Reason to believe" stage 4. Conciliation stage

It requires the votes of at least four of the six Commissioners to take any action. The FEC can close a case at any point after reviewing a complaint. If a violation is found and conciliation cannot be reached, then the FEC can institute a civil court action against a respondent.

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