How useful are raised funds after public financing is accepted?
July 2, 2004 12:03 PM   Subscribe

Kerry & Bush are raising money hand over fist, but they are both planning on taking the $75 million in taxpayer money when they become the official nominee for their party-which limits them to spending only that money.
So, my question is, what good does all this money they are raising now do them once they take the official $75 million? Can they give it to some other group to spend on their behalf? Can they spend it on their election in some other legal way?
posted by aacheson to Law & Government (4 answers total)
My understanding (from previous news stories) is that they are not covered by any spending limitations right now. Once they have been officially nominated, then the rules kick in. So they're trying to raise and spend as much as they can before the conventions. (But what happens to any money they have left over?)
posted by teo at 12:59 PM on July 2, 2004

IIRC, they can donate it to the national party for those (in)famous "issue" ads and "get out the vote drives".

They just can't be used for "Vote [insert candidate]" ads and the official campaigns can't officially tell/ask/suggest what the parties do with the money.
posted by karmaville at 1:21 PM on July 2, 2004

I can't say that I really understand why people are donating to their campaigns anyway, given that both candidates have easy access to millions upon millions of their own (or perhaps their wife's, or father's) dollars. I always wondered about that, actually.
posted by reklaw at 1:48 PM on July 2, 2004

I believe there are restrictions upon how much personal funding can be used by either party, although I don't know if that applies if the candidates don't accept federal funding. Given that Kerry wrote his campaign a six million dollar check, I don't think it does. And I don't believe that one can legitimately use spousal money to fund campaigns, as Kerry's case has also shown. But I think it is because the money in question is held in Ms. Heinz Kerry's name as opposed to both of theirs. But I'm not a campaign finance reform expert, so.
posted by calistasm at 3:54 PM on July 2, 2004

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