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FEC v. Populist Party (92-0674)


On April 20, 1995, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued a consent order and judgment stating that defendants violated the Federal Election Campaign Act (the Act) by making and accepting corporate and excessive contributions in 1984, and ordering defendants to pay a $20,000 civil penalty for these violations.

Specifically, the court, by agreement of the parties involved, determined that:

  • Liberty Lobby, Inc., and Cordite Fidelity, Inc., violated 2 U.S.C. §441b(a), which prohibits the use of corporate money in connection with federal elections, by providing services (in-kind contributions) to the Populist Party in the amount of $268,056 and $82,346, respectively;
  • Willis A. Carto, the director of both corporations and treasurer of the Populist Party, violated 2 U.S.C. §441b(a) by consenting to the provision of the corporate services mentioned above;
  • Blayne Hutzel, comptroller of both corporations, violated 2 U.S.C. §441b(a) by accepting corporate services, loans and payments valued at $352,903 on behalf of the Populist Party;
  • The Populist Party violated 2 U.S.C. §441b(a) by accepting the above corporate contributions and other corporate contributions, for a total of $368,303 in illegal corporate money;
  • The Populist Party violated 2 U.S.C. §441a(f), which prohibits committees from accepting contributions in excess of established limits, by accepting contributions from individuals in excess of their annual limit of $5,000 per party committee;
  • The Populist Party violated 2 U.S.C. §441a(a)(1)(A) and (C) by making excessive contributions to the Maureen Salaman for Vice President Committee and the Bob Richards for President Committee; and
  • The Bob Richards for President committee violated 2 U.S.C. 441a(f) by accepting $9,756 in excessive contributions from the Populist Party.

Source:   FEC RecordJuly 1995. FEC v. Populist Party, No. 92-0674(HHG) (D.D.C. Apr. 20, 1995).