Arizona Central: Debbie Lesko hit with new complaint over $50,000 campaign-cash move
Debbie Lesko, the Republican nominee for a vacant West Valley congressional seat, was hit with a new legal complaint Thursday involving her transfer of $50,000 in state campaign cash to a federal group supporting her candidacy.
The Campaign Legal Center, a Washington-based group that supports stricter enforcement of campaign regulations, asked the Federal Election Commission to impose sanctions to deter what it considered a novel financing move.
"This is unprecedented and it is serious," said Brendan Fischer, director of the center's federal and FEC reform efforts. "There is a prohibition on federal candidates using state money to support their federal campaigns, and Debbie Lesko appears to be trying to do indirectly what she cannot do directly."
Fischer said Lesko was limited by federal law to transferring only $5,000 to the PAC.
Fischer acknowledged the FEC is unlikely to act on the center's complaint until after the November elections. Lesko's financial move may be closely watched in campaign circles nationally to see if it establishes new boundaries on political funding.