Saturday, August 18, 2007

Giuliani To Fund Raise In England

This from the New York Post

Rudy Giuliani is planning an unusual fund-raiser next month - in a foreign country.

The Republican front-runner will travel to London for the Sept. 19 event, which aims to give Americans living abroad a chance to get involved. Only U.S. citizens are permitted to donate to U.S. presidential hopefuls.

"We are recruiting host committee members today and want to include everyone who can make a firm commitment to raise a minimum of $10,000," Giuliani fund-raising director Donna Henderson wrote in a letter to supporters.

"I have not heard of it before," political consultant Hank Sheinkopf said of the idea of fund-raising in a foreign land.

Well the article stated that Rudy was only going to be asking for donations from US citizens living abroad, which is legal. Those folks are allowed to participate and to vote. It is interesting for Rudy to be going after the support and votes of US Citizens outside of US borders.

Still and all, the whole issue of the illegality of foreigners (non-US citizens) contributing to US elections is an interesting one to ponder. Certainly there have been questionable contributions received by other candidates in the past.
The Democrat National Committee returned millions of dollars in suspect donations after the 1996 elections amid allegations that the contributions came from foreign sources, prompting a Justice Department investigation that resulted in the convictions of several Democratic fund-raisers.
The Federal Election Commission says this about foreign contributions: It's illegal for non-US citizens to contribute to any campaign in the US.
The ban on political contributions and expenditures by foreign nationals was first enacted in 1966 as part of the amendments to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), an "internal security" statute. The goal of the FARA was to minimize foreign intervention in U.S. elections by establishing a series of limitations on foreign nationals. These included registration requirements for the agents of foreign principals and a general prohibition on political contributions by foreign nationals. In 1974, the prohibition was incorporated into the Federal Election Campaign Act (the FECA), giving the Federal Election Commission (FEC) jurisdiction over its enforcement and interpretation.

The Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) prohibits any foreign national from contributing, donating or spending funds in connection with any federal, state, or local election in the United States, either directly or indirectly. It is also unlawful to help foreign nationals violate that ban or to solicit, receive or accept contributions or donations from them. Persons who knowingly and willfully engage in these activities may be subject to fines and/or imprisonment.

Lest we forget, Rudy also has an honorary knighthood.

(Rudolph Giuliani KBE)