DNC Files Complaint About RFK Jr.’s Efforts super PAC to put on the state’s ballots

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Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. speaks at a Hispanic Heritage Month event at Wilshire Ebelle Theater on September 15, 2023 in Los Angeles, California.

Mario Tama | Getty Images

Democratic National Committee foot Federal Election Commission complaint against the independent presidential campaign of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and its super PAC allies, alleging that the campaign received an improper benefit from the work of the super PAC to qualify him for the state ballot.

The Kennedy-aligned PAC American Values ​​2024 announced late last year that it would invest eight figures to help the Kennedy campaign’s signature-gathering efforts. Independent candidates need to collect petition signatures to be on the ballot in general elections in many states, rather than qualifying by winning party primaries.

Kennedy has only qualified for the ballot in Utah so far, but American Values ​​2024 has begun hiring vendors to collect signatures in key battleground states at the start of 2024. Just last week, it announced it would fund ballot access efforts for Kennedy in five Years. Additional mandates.

According to the Democratic National Committee’s complaint, this amounts to an illegal contribution by American Values ​​2024 to the Kennedy campaign, “in violation of federal law.”

The Kennedy campaign “is in the process of accepting an illegal in-kind contribution of $15 million by coordinating their efforts to get him on the ballot,” Democratic Party legal counsel Bob Lennard said in a phone call on Friday announcing the FEC complaint.

“Instead of doing this hard work itself, using funds raised according to candidate contribution limits, the campaign is taking a shortcut, outsourcing the core campaign function to a super PAC,” Lienhardt added.

In a statement in response, Tony Lyons, co-chair of American Values ​​2024, said, “The Democratic National Committee wants to deprive millions of people of their basic constitutional rights to vote in a relentless attack against democracy.”

“This FEC complaint is just another of the Democratic National Committee’s desperate tactics to discredit and discredit Kennedy and drain his campaign funds,” Lyons continued. “The American people are too smart to be fooled by these political games.”

The Kennedy campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The campaign has previously denied coordinating with the Super PAC on ballot access efforts.

Among the top donors to American Values ​​2024 is Tim Mellon, a major Trump donor who gave $15 million to the pro-Kennedy group in 2023, according to campaign finance records. FEC filings show Mellon also donated $10 million to MAGA Inc., the major pro-Trump political action committee, last year.

Gavin D. Becker, who provides security for Kennedy, also donated more than $10 million to the super PAC, but the group returned some of the “bridge funding” that was not needed, Lyons told NBC News.

“He has committed to continuing interim funding until RFK Jr. is elected president,” Lyons added.

This article originally appeared on www.cnbc.com

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