The Democratic National Committee has filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission alleging illegal coordination between the campaign and an allied Super PAC.
The complaint claims that the effort by the Super PAC to garner the requisite number of signatures for RFK’s name to appear on the state ballot violated federal law by cooperating too closely with the campaign.
“Put simply, to qualify for the ballot under state law, American Values 2024 must coordinate its activity with Mr. Kennedy and his campaign in a way that violates federal campaign finance laws,” attorneys for the Democratic National Committee wrote in a complaint to the FEC.
DNC legal counsel Bob Lenhard argued that “state law presumes and in some cases requests that the candidate committee or candidate” participate in the ballot signature effort making the spending by the Kennedy-aligned Super PAC an in-kind contribution and, thus, illegal.
“The DNC wants to deny millions of people their basic constitutional voting rights in a relentless onslaught against democracy,” Tony Lyons, the founder of American Values, said in a statement responding to the complaint. “The FEC complaint is just another desperate DNC tactic to defame Kennedy, vilify him, and drain his campaign funds.”
The DNC has made a multi-million dollar effort to try and tie RFK donors to Trump. While some Kennedy donors have no doubt given to Trump, the idea that RFK is a stalking horse for Trump is ludicrous.
“We receive parcels of signatures from our volunteer groups all over the United States,” she said. “To my knowledge, we have yet to receive any signatures from American Values PAC or any PAC, nor have we provided any information that is not available to every volunteer and media outlet on our public website.”
The DNC is just throwing sand in the voter’s faces. The complaint won’t go anywhere and what it really shows is how worried the Democrats are that Kennedy is going to cost Biden more than Trump in the November election.
The complaint is unlikely to go anywhere — the commission is evenly divided among the two major parties and frequently deadlocks on enforcement questions — but it signals that national Democrats are dialing up their efforts to target Kennedy, the current leading non-major party presidential candidate, over fears that he may siphon votes away from President Joe Biden in this year’s election.
A senior adviser for the DNC dismissed the idea that the complaint represents any concerns about polling showing Biden losing to former President Donald Trump or renewed fears about the president’s age.
“I think we’re concerned that Donald Trump is disrespecting the democratic process,” Ramsey Reid, a senior adviser at the DNC said. “It’s pretty clear that Trump and his megadonors are propping up RFK Jr. as a stalking horse.”
What’s “pretty clear” is that it’s the Democrats who are “disrespecting the democratic process” by trying to keep a legitimately competitive candidate off the ballot.