Political law links 2.13

CRIMINAL COORDINATION PLEA. Justice.gov. “A campaign finance manager and political consultant pleaded guilty today in the Eastern District of Virginia for coordinating $325,000 in federal election campaign contributions by a political action committee (PAC) to a Congressional campaign committee. This is the first criminal prosecution in the United States based upon the coordination of campaign contributions between political committees.”

FOCUS ON COORDINATION. WP. “Coordination among candidates and independent organizations has been illegal for decades, but in recent years, the boundary between campaigns and their big-money allies has blurred.”

SUPER PAC COORDINATION CRIME. HuffPo. “Tyler Harber, 34, campaign manager for Virginia Republican congressional candidate Chris Perkins, used a super PAC he created to spend $325,000 to support Perkins’ campaign against incumbent Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.). Perkins lost the race to Connolly by 25 percentage points.”

FIRST OF ITS KIND. NYT. “The plea appears to mark the first coordination case brought by federal prosecutors since the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision in 2010, which allowed for the creation of political action committees that can raise and spend unlimited money, including from corporations, so long as they do not coordinate the spending with candidates.”

GUILTY PLEA. The Hill. “Harber, who ran the campaigns or consulted for many federal candidates, is among the first to be convicted of coordinated communications between a candidate and an outside group.”

COORDINATION AND FALSE STATEMENTS. Roll Call. “Each count carries a maximum of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000, according to a DOJ aide. A sentencing hearing is scheduled for June 5.”

REQUEST TO CEASE. The Hill. “Rep. Matt Salmon is preparing to send a cease-and-desist letter to an unaffiliated conservative PAC that has been raising money using the Arizona Republican’s name, the congressman’s aides said Thursday.”

NM: FILLING THE CALENDAR. LCsun-news.com. “Lobbyists and organizations already have spent more than $66,000 on receptions and dinners for New Mexico’s public officials through the first three weeks of this year’s legislative session, which ends March 21, according to an analysis of data on the New Mexico Secretary of State’s website.”

VA: FINE FOR LATE REPORT. Leesburgtoday.com. “Loudoun County’s voter registrar has fined Supervisor Eugene A. Delgaudio $100 for turning in a campaign finance report late.”

HAVE A GOOD WEEKEND. I’ll send around the next set of links on Tuesday.

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