Sunday, October 26, 2008


Barack is a systems guy. He learns how they work, then he exploits them to his advantage.

In order to build support in Chicago, he got a job from Bill Ayers dolling out money to politically active non-profits like ACORN. Base built. When he wanted to get elected to the state senate, he brought in a professional fixer to get all of his opponents thrown off of the ballot. Trying to unseat Hillary, he saw an organizational opportunity in the caucus states, a place where an outsider could outwork and outsmart a more powerful adversary.

In financing his campaign, he's exploited lax rules and non-existent oversight to ignore the rules. This story, percolating for some time in the blogosphere, has now broken into the mainstream media.
Concerns about anonymous donations seeping into the campaign began to surface last month, mainly on conservative blogs. Some bloggers described their own attempts to display the flaws in Obama's fundraising program, donating under such obviously phony names as Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, and reported that the credit card transactions were permitted.
The Washington Post is actually reporting a story that could hurt Barack, but the paper is leaving the accusations for others to make.
But clearly invented names have been used often enough to provoke an outcry from Republican critics. Donors to the Obama campaign using false names such as Doodad Pro and Good Will gave $17,375 through 1,000 separate donations, with no sign that they immediately tripped alarms at the campaign. Of more concern, Cairncross said, are reports that the campaign permitted money from 123 foreign nationals to enter its accounts.
The Post account mostly points fingers at systemic problems, not at the Obama campaign.
Under current law, there is also very little policing of small-dollar contributions. The false donations uncovered by news outlets or by rival campaigns have all involved more than $200, because those contributions must be disclosed in published reports. The campaigns are not required to share any information about donors who give less than $200. And they are not required to even keep records of donors who give less than $50 -- they can even give cash.
Others have been more aggressive - Neil Munro writes at National Review:
Right-of-center activists also claim that Barack Obama's campaign has collected tens of millions of dollars from suspect overseas donors. Their complaints spurred the Republican National Committee on Oct. 6 to ask the Federal Election Commission for an investigation of the Obama donations.

To test the campaigns' practices, this author bought two pre-paid American Express gift cards worth $25 each to donate to the Obama and McCain campaigns online. As required by law, the campaigns' Web sites asked for, and National Journal provided, the donor's correct name, location and employment. The cards were purchased with cash at a Washington, D.C., drugstore, and the campaigns' Web sites were accessed through a public computer at a library in Fairfax County, Virginia.

The Obama campaign's Web site accepted the $25 donation, but the McCain campaign's Web site rejected it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What does Sally Quinn, that oh so fair and unbiased (journalist?)have to say lately?