An investigation by CNN has exposed that the National Republican Congressional Committee and Super PAC's associated with Republican candidates in the 2014 election cycle set up fake Twitter accounts to share internal polling data, which seems to violate campaign finance laws in the post Citizens United world. The Twitter accounts used coded language to share the polling data with Super PAC's such as American Crossroads and American Action Network to help them determine where to spend their advertising dollars. The NRCC and both Super PAC's have refused to comment on CNN's accusations, but every fake Twitter account has been taken down immediately after CNN contacted them for comment.
While it seems like this case is cut and dry, it isn't nearly that simple. There are a variety of things that the NRCC and the Super PAC's can hide behind if, and that's a big IF, a formal complaint is filed by the Federal Election Commission. Their comment on the CNN story doesn't make me too optimistic that they will even dig into the accusations. FEC vice-chair Ann Ravel released a statement saying that the rules governing social media and campaign finance are 'murky' and will be difficult to go after without new rules.
This is the exact type of thing that President Obama warned about in his 2010 State of the Union Address where he famously chided the Supreme Court for their ruling in Citizens United. Everyone besides the five justices who voted in the case knew exactly what was going to happen in the world of campaign finance after their ruling and it can go without saying that they have been proven correct. Dark money rules the day and will continue to do so until the American people wise up and correct this error.Sixteen states
have passed a resolution calling for Citizens United to be overturned by a Constitutional Amendment, but that is not enough. These sixteen states are not waiting for our Congress to act and instead want to change the Constitution by using a tactic that has never been used before, which is by a national convention assembled by the states. Two-thirds, or 34, states need to call for a convention to amend the Constitution, which means that we are 18 states short of this goal.
We can make this happen if we don't give up. We can't continue to sit back and watch the Republican Party test the boundaries of election law and stick their thumb in our eyes.