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  • Weekly Digests

Week of October 23 – October 27, 2017

October 27, 2017

Commission meetings and hearings

Advisory opinions

Request Withdrawn

Advisory Opinion Request 2017-11 (Gallegly for Congress)

On October 25, former Rep. Elton Gallegly withdrew AOR 2017-11, in which he had asked whether he could use campaign funds to repair a home security system.

Enforcement

The Commission made public three closed cases and one Statement of Reasons, as follows. For more information, see the case documents in the Enforcement Query System.

MUR 7081

  • COMPLAINANT: Howard Klein
  • RESPONDENTS: Floridians for a Strong Middle Class and Jennifer May, in her official capacity as treasurer (FSMC); Nicholas A. Mastroianni II; 230 East 63rd – 6 Trust, LLC; Pride United Limited Partnership; Chic Boutique, LLC; Mark Giresi; and Rep. Patrick Murphy
  • SUBJECT: The complaint alleged that Mastroianni arranged for foreign nationals to contribute $50,000 through 230 East 63rd -6 Trust, LLC, to FSMC, an independent expenditure-only political committee supporting Murphy’s 2016 campaign for Florida’s United States Senate seat, and that FSMC knowingly accepted the contributions. The complaint alleged further that Chic Boutique, LLC, contributed $5,000 in the name of another to FSMC, and that Pride United made a $20,000 contribution in the name of another to FSMC.
  • DISPOSITION: The Commission exercised its prosecutorial discretion and dismissed the matter. The Commission observed that the evidence available in the record did not provide a sufficient basis to establish that the contributions at issue were foreign national contributions or contributions in the name of another. Commissioner Ellen L. Weintraub issued a Statement of Reasons, which was also signed by former Commissioner Ann M. Ravel.

MUR 7114

  • COMPLAINANT: End Citizens United
  • RESPONDENTS: Casperson for Congress and Judi Skradski, in her official capacity as treasurer (Federal Committee); Tom Casperson; and Tom Casperson for State Senate (State Committee)
  • SUBJECT: The complaint alleged that the State Committee transferred funds to the Federal Committee to pay for travel related to Casperson’s congressional campaign. The complaint alleged further that after Casperson became a federal candidate, the State Committee raised and spent non-federal funds. Casperson was a 2016 primary candidate for Michigan’s 1st Congressional District.
  • DISPOSITION: The Commission dismissed the matter and closed the file.

MUR 7206

  • COMPLAINANT: Robert Breeze
  • RESPONDENTS: Bonneville International Corporation, d/b/a KSL-TV and KSL 1160 (Bonneville); Deseret Management Corporation (DMC); Deseret News Publishing Company (Deseret News); and McMullin for President Committee, Inc. and Jeffrey Carson, in his official capacity as treasurer (the Committee)
  • SUBJECT: The complaint alleged that Bonneville, DMC and Deseret News made prohibited contributions to or expenditures in support of the Committee, by publishing “fake news” and providing disproportionate coverage of McMullin, that the Committee failed to report any such contributions, and that Bonneville, DMC and Deseret News failed to report independent expenditures. Evan McMullin was a 2016 candidate for United States President.
  • DISPOSITION: The Commission found no reason to believe a violation occurred because the available information indicates Bonneville, DMC and Deseret News are legitimate press entities that were acting within the scope of the media exemption and thus did not make contributions or expenditures.

Administrative fines

The Commission made public five campaign finance enforcement matters that were resolved through its Administrative Fines (AF) program, as follows. For more information, see the case documents in the Enforcement Query System.

AF 3322
Jill Stein for President and Steven Welzer, in his official capacity as treasurer. The Commission made a final determination and assessed a civil penalty of $9,162.

AF 3325

Friends of Todd Young, Inc. and Scott Shishman, in his official capacity as treasurer. The Commission made a final determination and assessed a civil penalty of $2,296.

AF 3327

Jill Stein for President and Steven Welzer, in his official capacity as treasurer. The Commission made a final determination and assessed a civil penalty of $459.

AF 3329

Fiore for Congress and Andrea Schulein, in his official capacity as treasurer. The Commission made a final determination and assessed a civil penalty of $407.

AF 3330

Taylor Griffin for Congress and Taylor Griffin, in his official capacity as treasurer. The Commission made a final determination and assessed a civil penalty of $6,252.

Audits

Final Audit Report of the Commission on the Illinois Republican Party

On October 24, the Commission issued the Final Audit Report of the Commission on the Illinois Republican Party, covering financial activity between January 1, 2011, and December 31, 2012. The Commission approved findings related to the misstatement of financial activity, recordkeeping for communications, reporting of debts and obligations and recordkeeping for employees.

Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum on the Freedom’s Defense Fund

On October 25, in a tally vote, the Commission approved four findings in an Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum on the Freedom’s Defense Fund. The approved findings related to misstatement of financial activity, disclosure of occupation and name of employer, reporting of apparent independent expenditures, and recordkeeping for communications.

Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum on the Conservative Majority Fund

 On October 25, in a tally vote Wednesday, the Commission approved five findings in an Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum on the Conservative Majority Fund. The approved findings related to misstatement of financial activity, disclosure of occupation and name of employer, reporting of apparent independent expenditures, reporting of debts and obligations, and recordkeeping for communications.

Litigation

Publications

Campaign Guide for Corporations and Labor Organizations. On October 26, the Commission approved the draft Campaign Guide for Corporations and Labor Organizations, subject to edits which will replace the guide last updated in January 2007.

Press releases

FEC Approves Campaign Guide (issued October 26)

Upcoming Commission meetings and hearings

Meeting dates are subject to change. Please contact the Press Office the week of the scheduled meeting for confirmation.

Upcoming educational programs

  • November 14-15: Washington, DC Regional Conference for candidates, parties and separate segregated funds. Additional information is available on the Educational Outreach page of the Commission website.
  • December 6: Nonconnected PAC Webinar. Additional information is available on the Educational Outreach page of the Commission website.

Upcoming reporting due dates

  • November 20: November Monthly Reports are due. For more information on monthly reporting dates, refer to the 2017 Monthly Reporting page of the Commission website.
  • December 20: December Monthly Reports are due. For more information on monthly reporting dates, refer to the 2017 Monthly Reporting page of the Commission website.

Additional research materials

The Official 2016 Presidential General Election Results are available in the Library section of the website. This listing was compiled from the official vote totals published by state election offices.

Additional research materials about the agency, campaign finance information, and election results are available through the Library section of the Commission website.

The 2017 edition of the Combined Federal State Disclosure and Election Directory is available on the new Commission website. This publication identifies the federal and state agencies responsible for the disclosure of campaign finances, lobbying, personal finances, public financing, candidates on the ballot, election results, spending on state initiatives and other financial filings.

The FEC Record is available as a continuously updated online news source.

The 2017 edition of Title 11 of the Code of Federal Regulations can be downloaded from the website. To order printed copies, call (800) 424-9530 (press 6) or send an email to info@fec.gov.

Join the FEC on Twitter and YouTube

Follow @FEC on Twitter to receive the latest information on agency updates, news releases, and weekly activity. Subscribe to our YouTube channel, FECTube: FECConnect on Demand, to watch instructional videos that have been designed to help candidates and committees comply with federal campaign finance laws. Note that the FEC is not currently available through other social media platforms at this time. The use of the agency’s logo, name, and likeness on other mediums has not been authorized by the FEC.