A few hours ago, the Obama campaign filed a complaint with the FEC demanding that Crossroads GPS give up its donor list.
In the complaint, obtained by The New York Times, Robert F. Bauer, the campaign’s chief counsel, writes that the group — founded by Karl Rove, among others — can no longer shield the identity of its donors by defining itself as a “social welfare” organization.The complaint, as well as a letter Bauer sent to Crossroads president Steven Law and founder Karl Rove, is viewable here. It refers to Real Truth about Obama v. FEC, a decision handed down by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals last week. It held that the FEC must determine the "major purpose" of organizations that involve themselves in campaigns. The Obama campaign argues that Crossroads' "major purpose" is to influence elections. It further cites evidence that Crossroads has already run up over $2.1 million in independent expenditures--well over the FEC's $1,000 limit. Under this standard, the Obama campaign believes that Crossroads meets the FEC definition of a PAC, not a charity--and thus is required to disclose its donors. The letter Bauer sent to Law and Rove essentially says, "You're going to lose this case--save yourselves some embarrassment and give up your donor list."
“Crossroads seems to believe that it can run out the clock and spend massive sums of money in this election without accounting for a trace of its funding,” Mr. Bauer wrote in the complaint, filed Tuesday. “Now, a federal appellate court has issued a ruling that makes clear that Crossroads is out of time.”
You have to love the smell of napalm in the afternoon.