Thursday, July 20, 2006

CREW forces ARMPAC out of business

Wow, it's like Christmas around here this week! From CREW's website:
Washington, DC – Last night, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) released a conciliation agreement reached with Americans for a Republican Majority political action committee (ARMPAC) stemming from a complaint Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed against the PAC last August. As a result of CREW's FEC complaint, ARMPAC has agreed to pay a $115,000 civil penalty and go out of business. ARMPAC was created and led by former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX).

This is one of the 50 largest fines ever obtained by the FEC in its 30-year history.

The FEC found that:

--ARMPAC failed to report accurately nearly a quarter million dollars in contributions and expenditures during the 2001-2002 election cycle.

--ARMPAC failed to report nearly $325,000 in debts owed to 25 campaign vendors.

--ARMPAC improperly used over $200,000 in soft money to pay for federal election activity. In particular, ARMPAC improperly used over $120,000 in soft money to pay for GOTV activities in Texas immediately before the 2002 general election.

Just so we're all on the same page here, CREW stands for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a group that focuses on corruption, electoral fraud, campaign finance fraud, that sort of thing. They have their hands full.

ARMPAC, or Americans for a Republican Majority Political Action Committee, is the national version of TRMPAC, Tom Delay's PAC. You know, the one whose heads were indicted for laundering corporate soft-money contributions to Republican candidates (in contravention of what is pretty much Texas' only campaign finance law). The one started by the guy now facing criminal charges in Austin, who masterminded the mid-census gerrymandering in Texas.

Sometimes the good guys do win.

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