McCain Snared in His Own FEC Trap?

Senator McCain, campaign-finance-reformer extraordinaire, may be facing charges of FEC violations for going beyond the spending cap set when a candidate accepts matching funds. McCain used the promise of claiming the matching funds, in order to secure a 4 million dollar loan last December to bolster his flagging campaign fund-raising. But after his strong showing in the Super Tuesday primaries, he sent a letter to the FEC, stating that he was withdrawing from the program. The FEC still has not met to vote on the matter, so there’s a question as to whether McCain has been excused from the program or not.

But there’s another complication. Senator McCain used the FEC matching funds authorization to gain ballot access in Ohio. The other candidates went through a complicated procedure in gathering signatures from Ohio’s 18 districts in order to be placed on the ballot. McCain bypassed the process with a program that he is now trying to withdraw from. Wouldn’t logic dictate that he also needs to be removed from the Ohio ballot?

Former FEC chair, Brad Smith, questions whether this amounts to election fraud.

With McCain being limited on how much he can spend between now and the Republican convention in September, will the Republican party be able to help him as they helped Dole in 96?

Nope. The Republican Party is limited in any assistance they can offer.


The McCain-Feingold legislation sponsored by Senator McCain himself.

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