March 27th, 2008
10:12 AM ET
7 years ago

Liberal bloggers file complaint over McCain's spending

ALT TEXT

Abbi Tatton reports on the latest FEC headache for John McCain.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – A group of liberal bloggers filed a complaint to the Federal Election Commission, saying Sen. John McCain is breaking campaign finance law.

The McCain campaign reported spending $58 million this election cycle, which is a few million more than what is permitted for candidates who commit to public financing in the primaries.

Led by bloggers at Firedoglake and DailyKos, the group submitted a complaint to the FEC on Tuesday, and is asking for more signatures online to be added to another, larger complaint.

McCain signed up for the guaranteed public money last year, but in February, his campaign wrote a letter to the FEC announcing he would turn down government matching funds for his primary campaign.

FEC Chair David Mason replied that the four commissioners must first vote in favor of the withdrawal request - a development which is not possible right now, as vacancies leave only two commissioners in the FEC.

A McCain campaign official says the complaint is "frivolous and without merit."

Last month, the Democratic National Committee filed a similar FEC complaint against McCain, charging that he was not eligible to withdraw from the public financing system and the strict spending limits it requires.

–CNN's Eric Weisbrod and Abbi Tatton


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. A

    Alls I have to say is Kerry/McCain 04...lol

    March 27, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  2. Justin from West Haven, CT

    McCain- Savings and Loan didn't stop this guy from bailing out people. Why would McCain follow FEC rules when they cannot even function currently? The FEC is a joke.

    March 27, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  3. Ross in MD

    I guess that straight-talk express got a flat tire huh McBush?

    This from the guy who was championing campaign finance reform. Now he doesn't follow his own rules and breaks the law without remorse.

    He is Bush III.

    March 27, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  4. Wayne, Greenville TX

    A McCain campaign official says the complaint is "frivolous and without merit."

    Actually, John McCain is frivolous and without merit. :-)

    March 27, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  5. Brian

    Where can I sign?

    March 27, 2008 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  6. George

    As to the "saddle up" comment; he should then be ready re: references to Monica in White House–where was his wife…the candidate–where was the oversight –maybe it was consensual all the way around–don't like it–then "saddle up" !!

    And, most importantly for trivia buffs, the only eligible candidate that could claim a "double" family impeachment would be Hillary. Now, that would make history. The first was nailed for lying–she has already shown a similar propensity !!!

    March 27, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  7. A REAL American

    Is this all liberals have on McCain? Pathetic, to say the least.... but not surprising, considering the sites that the complaint is coming from. They should get back to what they do best, which is spewing idiotic and hateful filth on the net.

    March 27, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  8. chicago chris

    Surprise surprise. McCain backtracking on taking the public's money after he tried to be all high and mighty towards Barack because Barack wouldn't renounce fundraising. Say one thing and do the other when the odds are against you. I hope his other policies aren't like this. And for all the Obama haters who say that he is a racist because his pastor made some racially charged speeches years ago think about this; if you pastor molests a little boy 10 years ago does that make you a pedophile because you trusted him for those 10 years afterwards? Obviously Barack is not a racist against whites or blacks. Any of you who think he is now b/c of Rev. Wright were never going to vote for him anyways and are using this story to justify your already formed opinions, whether it was because of a racist speech or some other non-issue. Also for for Dems who will vote for a Rep. b/c their nominee isn't elected, you are stupid too. At least vote for Nader on principle b/c if McCain is elected then at least you tried your part to get our troops out.

    March 27, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  9. Bored of Bias

    Every dollar McCain raises from now until November is against federal election laws. AGAINST THE LAW.

    It's not a difficult concept.

    And yet, for some reason I doubt I'll see a lot of media coverage of his illegal campaign. I guess it's ok to subvert democracy and break the law if your a 'maverick'. Right?

    March 27, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  10. jimmy vekmen

    I beieve that Mccain should be allowed to raise as much money as he can without constraints in order to match the Democratic candidates and have parity. Why should he be limited in the amount of money he needs to raise for his campaign. It would be an even playing field if he were allowed to do so. It is fair and just for an election that is crucial and historic..

    March 27, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  11. Jim Kansas

    It is not appear to be frivolous. What seems patheic is the fact that the FEC has not acted on previous filings and made it's determination yet. The fact that the FEC is not capable of performing its functions currently do to vacancies should be a major concern.

    Fact is that McCain did infact file for public funs, the question that has yet to be determined is did he lock himself in, if he did then he is inviolation of election funding laws or did he withdraw in time to permit him to go on a spending spee. Personnally, if I was not involation of election finance laws, I would want the FEC to make a ruling and make a ruling now not tommrrow.

    March 27, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  12. THE COMPLAINT HAS MERIT

    ISN'T IT CONVENIENT TO NOT HAVE ENOUGH COMMISSIONERS ON BENCH. MCWAR PROBABLY SPENT $10 MILLION OF OUR TAX MONEY ON HIS CAMPAIGN, IT HAS BECOME COMMON PRACTICE FOR MCWAR TO DIP IN WRONG POCKET. HE'S DONE IT BEFORE.

    March 27, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  13. Mike in Houston

    Far left loonies already getting mobilized. Should be a sprited and divisive next few months.

    March 27, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  14. Pennsylvanians! DON'T FALL FOR IT!

    Yeah and her husband doesn't see a problem with continuing to fight dirty as his speech inferred yesterday-

    he claims the clintons are fighters, yes, dirty fighters, under handed fighters- they change the rules to fit their needs and the media continues to support...

    theirs fighting dirty and their fighting FAIR- the clintons have sabbotaged this party and the will and voice of the people!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    There you go twisting what Polosi has said about the super delegates..

    FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE BEEN MISGUIDED BY THE CLINTONS RAGE OVER POLOSI--

    POLOSI IS NOT AGAINST PEOPLE VOTING OR BEING HEARD-- WHAT SHE IS SAYING IS, IF YOU LISTENED TO HER STATEMENT (WHICH HAS BEEN TWISTED BY THE CLINTONS–SURPRISE, SURPRISE) IS THAT BY HAVING THE SUPER DELEGATES BACK THE CANDIDATES WITH THE MOST VOTES, THEY WOULD IN EFFECT BE BACKING THE "WILL" OF THE PEOPLE!!!!!

    WHY SHOULD THE SUPER DELEGATES DECIDE???? WHEN WE THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN!!!!!!!!! POLOSI IS FAVORING A MAJORITY RULE, THAT'S WHAT THIS COUNTRY IS ALL ABOUT!!!!

    BUT BECAUSE CURRENTLY THAT DOESN'T FAVOR THE CLINTONS THEY'RE UP IN ARMS-- DO YOU THINK THAT THEY WOULD BE MAKING A BIG DEAL OUT OF HER STATEMENT IF THE SHOE WAS ON THE OTHER FOOT???? OF COURSE NOT....

    DIRTY PLAYERS- THE CLINTONS!

    March 27, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  15. Kareem from Hampton VA

    Is this the same FEC that McCain tried to slam Obama on!! WOW!! I guess this IS straight talk for a Republican!

    March 27, 2008 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  16. Charlotte

    Sounds like the dems. don't want to fight fair on the money front, this should also apply to Obama who was in favor of using public finance in the beginning.

    March 27, 2008 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  17. Diane from Virginia

    Whatever happened to the investigation into McCain being born outside the United States??? I understood that anyone running for Commander and Chief of the United States MUST of been born here. I want to know the real answer or is this being swept under the rug hoping it will go away?

    Now the money issue......Why is McCain getting away with breaking all the rules ?

    March 27, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  18. truth be told

    Jimmy,

    the problem is that he can't have it both ways...

    March 27, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  19. tim

    i think that you liberals are just stupid you want himto limit his amount of money he can raise and on the other hand allow(want the dems. to raise as much money as they want think about this if you are smarted enough. that treedle dee and tweedle dumb raised more then he did in one month than he did this whole campaign who needs dems when all they are out for is to steal more of my money that i have worked for

    March 27, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  20. Doug R.

    McCain is a two faced flip flopper. It's disgusting that he is allowed to spend any taxpayer money on his campaign. He does not represent the American people in the least. Let him get money from the Republican party and other sources. He doesn't deserve any money whatsoever from the taxpayers.

    March 27, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  21. mary cleveland, ohio

    The idea isn't for McCain to have parity. The idea is he has disregarded, actually broken his word. First, this is a capitalist country (although many don't like what capitalism has come to mean here) and McCain and the Republicans should be the first to say that when it comes to money there should never be parity. Secondly, McCain made an agreement and has broken his agreement. Not a good sign of his future behavior.

    March 27, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  22. NELSON Colorado Springs, Co

    Why are the bloggers at Firedoglake and DailyKos filed a complaint to the Federal Election Commission, saying Sen. John McCain is breaking campaign finance law? It not there money, not bad $58 millions for a $300,000 a year job. ok!

    March 27, 2008 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  23. BLR

    Cheaters, liars, and swine. If McCain had honor, he'd acknowledge his lack of an ability to plan accordingly initially, and follow the rules he agreed to. Instead, he's tossing his pork right and left and pretending that the rules don't apply to him. I have a hard time comprehending why this isn't getting more coverage than it has.

    More of the same. I can't believe I voted for this "Maverick" in 2000.

    March 27, 2008 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  24. Conservative

    I hope this means we push McCain aside and nominate America's real choice, Ron Paul

    March 27, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
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