The Huffington Post: Jeb Bush's Declaration Leaves A Few GOP Candidates In Fundraising Gray Area
“We don’t know of anyone at this juncture who has engaged in nearly as extensive operation of and fundraising for a super PAC as Jeb Bush,” said Paul S. Ryan, a lawyer with the Campaign Legal Center.
While the activities of other undeclared candidates may not result in calls for a DOJ investigation, Ryan said his group will continue to investigate and file complaints with the FEC.
“With respect to ‘testing the waters’ and candidate status, we are very much so considering filing complaints against a bunch of others,” Ryan said.
Those may include other prospective candidates who have been touring early primary and caucus states of Iowa and New Hampshire with the help of committees raising funds outside of the candidate limits...
Ryan said there is scant history of enforcement or FEC consideration of "testing the waters” rules in the past decade. This may be because candidates abided by the rules until the 2012 election. Now, thanks to the opportunities for unlimited independent spending granted under the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision and a deadlocked and dysfunctional FEC, there is reward without apparent risk.
“There is more basis for urging investigations than we have ever seen before because the violations have become so blatant in our view,” Ryan said.
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