RNC: Obama Accepted Illegal, Foreign Campaign Cash

Posted: Oct 05, 2008 1:01 PM
The Republican National Committee is filing a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission over what they believe are illegal donations made to Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's campaign from foreign sources.

"We believe they have been accepting donations from foreign nationals and excessive contributions," said RNC Communications Director Danny Diaz. He said there were "questions with regards to the legitimacy" of the hundreds of millions low-dollar contributions Obama has received.

Federal campaign finance law forbids campaigns from accepting donations from foreign nationals. The complaint will be formally filed with the FEC Monday. The RNC is requesting that the FEC begin auditing Obama's campaign contributions.

If the RNC's allegations are true, it won't be the first time the FEC has found Obama guilty of taking money from foreign sources. Earlier this year, the FEC ordered the Obama campaign to return an illegal donation worth $31,100 made from two brothers in the Gaza Strip.

The RNC's complaint was spurred by a story written by Newsweek's Michael Isikoff on October 4. It said the Obama campaign had accepted online donations from people named "Doodad Pro" and "Good Will." The "Good Will" donor said his employer was "Loving" and his occupations was "You." The address he submitted was for a GoodWill Industries store.

Before Isikoff wrote his piece, several conservative blogs had discussed some of these odd-sounding donations as well.

RNC General Counsel Sean Carincross said various press reports have called into question at least 11,500 donors names. Those names donated approximately $33.8 million to Obama's campaign.

Carincross said, "There were no quality control devices," such as a method to verify a U.S. passport if a citizen was donating to Obama's campaign from overseas. He said he believed Obama had knowingly accepted foreign donations and taken no reasonable action to investigate the illegal donations.

"This is a widescale problem," he said.