Rep. Alexanadria Ocasio-Cortez is denying any violation in campaign finance law after a conservative watchdog group filed a complaint charging that her top aide funneled $1 million in contributions from a PAC he controlled to his own companies.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) waits to hear testimony from Michael Cohen, former attorney and fixer for President Donald Trump before the House Oversight Committee on Capitol Hill February 27, 2019 in Washington, DC.
But all the payments to the LLC were simply reported as "strategic consulting", based on FEC filings reviewed by the National Legal and Policy Center, a right-leaning ethics and accountability nonprofit that filed the complaint. But he defended the set-up on Twitter, saying, "We were doing something totally new, which meant a new setup". Spectrum News NY1 spoke with 2016 Sanders supporter Rep. Ocasio-Cortez about the campaign kickoff and who she was planning on endorsing.
PACs are required to report names and addresses of all people who paid more than $200 to "meet a candidate or committee operating expense" as well as the objective of the payments. He did not mention that it would also free candidates from the responsibility of disclosure. So, we were transparent about it from the start, ' he said.
The group stated it ran campaigns in a similar fashion for at least nine other candidates.
He called described the company as a "legitimate campaign vendor" that provided services to candidates and committees and that the "implications in recent press accounts that these entities in any way operated with less than full transparency or in some way to skirt to law, are absolutely and unequivocally false".
He said the political committees did not disclose who ultimately received money from the LLC because Federal Election Commission staffers told the corporation that it did not have to provide those details. It appears, however, that they underwrote a score of campaign-related events and activities for Ocasio-Cortez and other Congressional candidates.
Justice Democrats and Brand New Congress PAC sought to implement a national program to recruit non-traditional candidates for United States House of Representatives and Senate, and to support them with an infrastructure to effectively run their campaigns as an integrated, national effort - so that candidates could focus on being candidates that could best represent their communities, [as] opposed to exclusively focused on high-dollar fundraising and national endorsement to drive electoral success.