The Federal Elections Commission released a letter to the Bernie Sanders campaign detailing campaign finance issues they have with his campaign with the latest forms Bernie 2016 filed. Now to be fair to Bernie, his campaign has refunded some of the people who donated more than $2,700 back in December and January, however there have been no listed refunds since then. To note this paperwork requires a response by 6/14/16 which just happens to be the day of the final primary so IF Bernie responds it will be as DC is filling out the last votes of the primary.
Some highlights include:
- Actor/Bernie Supporter Mark Ruffalo continuing to donate after reaching his $2,700 limit and the campaign not refunding the excess money
- Ahmed Abdelmeguid (highlighting him because he is first on the list) donating $12,604.05 from Jan 1st to March 31st
- Someone named Scott Walker (and I highly doubt it’s the Wisconsin governor but I find it funny) donating $2,825.31
Attachment page 1 through the top of 595 are all donations that are above the $2,700.00 limit that have yet to be refunded. A lot of this is people making multiple donations and they may not realize they hit the $2,700 limit, though in the case of people like Mark Ruffalo who received a refund for reaching the limit and continuing to donate there is known deceit by the donator in my opinion
Now the fun part comes from pages 595 through 638 which are all foreign donations to the campaign and the last page is refunds that have no corresponding donation, just Bernie 2016 giving money to people randomly for no reason (which is probably the most innocent of the bunch since it is 100% possible that with all the donations there was a mistake in filing)
Just so everyone’s aware this is not just a problem with Bernie’s March filings, he also had a problem back with his February filing as well. In February he had a 264 page attachment with all his campaigns illegal donations received. That attachment has pages 1-241 have illegal donations over $2,700 that were not refunded and pages 241-263 of illegal donations and again the last page was money returned without an itemized reason.
By the way these are problems that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump do not have at all. This is a uniquely Bernie Sanders problem, one that brings questions about his understanding of campaign finance laws, his team’s understanding of those same laws and whether or not there is a knowing plan to deceive the FEC in order to raise funds. This is why a Bernie Sanders campaign is dangerous because he and his team are making such rookie mistakes that it brings into question things that should not be questions. How can Bernie rally against Wall Street when it is clear he and his team have no clue how to follow existing laws. How can Bernie complain about money in politics when it’s obvious he and his team have no clue how to follow those existing laws. Or is Bernie saying money in politics, through any means necessary, is good for him but not for anyone else which is a similar stance from his campaign on superdelegates. Also while Bernie complains about what the Hillary Victory Fund and SuperPACs do with their money, he is actively violating campaign finance laws and the only question that remains here is is he doing it willing, is a member of his team doing it willingly and which person will fall on the sword when it comes time to answer questions about how much fraud is going on in the Bernie 2016 campaign.
EDIT: Has campaigns on the mind and wrote Federal Election Campaign instead of Commission so thank you to everyone in the comments who pointed this out
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