Politico: Stearns faces complaint for personal spending from campaign account

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Former Republican Congressman Cliff Stearns has been hit with an FEC complaint for using his former campaign account for both personal use and to bolster his “lobbying activities.”

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"Although Stearns left Congress in 2013, he has used Friends of Cliff Stearns funds for a variety of personal expenses … in violation of the prohibition against converting campaign funds to personal use,” read the complaint, filed Friday by Washington-based Campaign Legal Center.

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“Former Members of Congress spending leftover campaign money as golden parachutes to subsidize their personal lifestyles is a serious misuse of contributions,” said Adav Noti, who is the CLC's senior director, trial litigation and strategy, in a statement. “The law bans elected officials from pocketing the campaign contributions they receive, and the FEC should strictly enforce that ban.”

Brendan Fischer, CLC's director of federal and FEC reform, added: “By law, campaign contributions are to be used for a candidate’s run for office or one’s duties as an officeholder, not as a personal slush fund.”

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