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For Immediate Release
August 9, 2005
Contact: Kelly Huff
Bob Biersack
Ian Stirton
George Smaragdis
COMPLIANCE CASES MADE PUBLIC
 

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

1.

MUR 5474

RESPONDENTS:

(a)   Dog Eat Dog Films, Inc.

(b)   Michael Moore

(c)   ABB 2004 PAC, Michael Archuleta, treasurer

(d)  Committee to Re-Defeat the President, David A. Lytel,    treasurer

(e)   Michael Dobbins

(f)    MoveOn.org Voter Fund

(g)   MoveOn.org

(h)       MoveOn.org PAC, Wes Boyd, treasurer

COMPLAINANT:

Dale A. Clausnitzer

SUBJECT:

Electioneering communication; excessive contribution; corporate contribution

DISPOSITION:

(a-b)  No reason to believe*

          [re: violated the Act in connection with the complaint filed in MUR 5474.]

(c-f)    No reason to believe*

          [re: violated the Act]

(g-h)  Dismiss the complaint

            The complainant alleged that Dog Eat Dog Films, Inc. violated the ban against corporate financing of electioneering communications by financing the film Fahrenheit 9/11, along with websites and hyperlinks promoting the film. The complaint further alleged that the production company that produced the film, violated the prohibition against corporate contributions and expenditures by using corporate assets to “promote, support and attack clearly identified candidates” and by providing “free or discounted” web space to political committees through the use of hyperlinks. The Commission found no reason to believe the respondents violated the law because the film, associated trailers and websites were not distributed by broadcast, cable or satellite, did not air within the electioneering communications period, or did not refer to a clearly identified candidate.

DOCUMENTS ON PUBLIC RECORD:

Documents from this matter are available from the Commission’s web site at http://www.fec.gov by entering either 5474 under case number in the Enforcement Query System.  They are also available in the FEC’s Public Records Office at 999 E St. NW in Washington.

 

 

2.

MUR 5539

RESPONDENTS:

(a)   Fellowship Adventure Group, LLC

(b)   IFC Films, LLC

(c)   Lions Gate Films, Inc.

(d)  Michael Moore

(e)   Harvey Weinstein

(f)    Bob Weinstein

COMPLAINANT:

Jeffrey S. Smith

SUBJECT:

Independent expenditure (express advocacy); excessive contribution; corporate contribution

DISPOSITION:

(a-f)   No reason to believe*

            The complainant alleged that the release and distribution of FAHRENHEIT 9/11 constituted an independent expenditure because the film expressly advocated the defeat of President Bush and that by being fully or partially responsible for the film’s release, Michael Moore and other entities associated with the film made excessive and/or prohibited contributions to unidentified candidates. The Commission found no reason to believe the respondents violated the Act because the film, associated trailers and website represented bona fide commercial activity, not “contributions” or “expenditures” as defined by the Federal Election Campaign Act.

DOCUMENTS ON PUBLIC RECORD:

Documents from this matter are available from the Commission’s web site at http://www.fec.gov by entering either 5539 under case number in the Enforcement Query System.  They are also available in the FEC’s 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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