CLC Files Complaint Against Greitens for Unlawful Use of State Campaign Funds

Eric Greitens speaking into a microphone at a podium.
Former Gov. Eric Greitens speaks at the St. Charles Convention Center in St. Charles, MO. Photo by Laurie Skrivan/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS

Campaign Legal Center (CLC) filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) against former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens (R) for the allegedly illegal spending of over $100,000 of leftover funds from a state-level gubernatorial campaign account to finance the startup costs of his ongoing U.S. Senate campaign.

The complaint, filed on Oct. 28, 2021, alleged that Greitens illegally spent more than $100,000 from his gubernatorial campaign to help launch his Senate campaign and falsely described some of that spending as a personal contribution from himself.

This unlawful spending also included payments to his Senate campaign manager, as well as to public relations firms and media consulting firms, and for digital costs.

Federal law prohibits Senate candidates from using state campaign funds to support their run for federal office because state-level contributions are subject to different rules than federal-level contributions.

While Greitens’ 2022 Senate campaign may only accept contributions of up to $2,900 per individual and, importantly, cannot receive corporate funds, his gubernatorial campaign raised dozens of contributions far exceeding that amount — some as much as $100,000 and above.

When a Senate candidate uses funds raised under state rules, they evade federal laws designed to guard against corruption and gain an unfair advantage over their opponents.

The FEC is the only government agency whose sole responsibility is overseeing the integrity of our political campaigns. The agency needs to take action against Eric Greitens and his campaigns for this blatantly illegal spending. 

Missouri voters have a right to know where the money being spent to influence their votes is coming from. Like all Americans, they have a right to a fair and transparent electoral process.

Brendan is a Senior Communications Manager for Campaign Finance and Ethics issues at CLC.
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