In the News: Montana Republican Party Violated Campaign Finance Law in Green Party Qualification Effort  

Rachel Prevost2020, News, Republicans

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Monday, June 29, 2020

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In the News: Montana Republican Party Violated Campaign Finance Law in Green Party Qualification Effort
 
Helena, MT –  Last Friday, in response to a complaint filed by the Montana Democratic Party, the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices found the MTGOP to have violated Montana campaign finance law in the course of their covert effort to qualify the Green Party for the ballot. 

The Montana Republican Party’s blatant attempt to meddle in Montana’s democratic process is now well-documented. After the MTGOP admitted to paying $100,000 to finance a signature gathering operation to qualify the Green Party for the ballot  — which has been thoroughly condemned by the MT Green Party — reports revealed that an outside group linked to a Steve Daines donor from Texas who spent $2 million bankrolling attacks on Senator Jon Tester in 2018 funded the group backing the GOP’s sham Green Party candidate. The MTGOP is led by executive director Spenser Merwin, a former senior staff member for Senator Daines.

In the news:

AP: Official finds Montana GOP violated campaign finance laws

The Montana Republican Party and two minor party qualification committees violated state campaign finance laws in a successful effort to qualify the Green Party of Montana for the primary ballot without the Green Party’s knowledge, the commissioner of political practices said Friday.”

“The Montana GOP has acknowledged paying Advanced Micro Targeting $100,000 to gather signatures to certify the Green Party for the ballot. The money was also listed as an in-kind contribution to a group called Montanans for Conservation, which didn’t register as a minor party qualifying committee until after the Green Party was certified for the ballot on March 6.”

Helena IR: State’s top political cop says groups broke finance laws in qualifying Greens

“The Montana Republican Party, Montanans for Conservation and Club for Growth Action violated the state’s campaign finance laws in an effort to qualify the Green Party for the ballot this year, according to a decision signed by the state Commissioner of Political Practices on Friday.”

“The Montana Republican Party paid AMT $100,000 to collect signatures and reported that as an in-kind donation to Montanans for Conservation. But Mangan found that the state GOP did not accurately report the date and distribution of that money.”

MTN News: State GOP broke reporting laws on Green Party spending, COPP says

“The Montana Republican Party and two other groups working to place the Green Party on Montana’s 2020 ballot broke campaign laws by failing to properly or timely report their transactions on the effort, the state political practices commissioner says.”

“In a ruling dated Thursday, Jeff Mangan said the GOP didn’t accurately report its $100,000 payment earlier this year for a company that hired people to gather signatures to qualify the Green Party.”

Yellowstone Public Radio: Montana Official Says GOP Violated Campaign Finance Law

“The state’s top campaign rules enforcer found the Montana Republican Party and two other groups violated state law. The violations came in a successful attempt to place the Green Party on this year’s primary ballot.”

“‘Montana voters have a right to fair and honest information so that they can make the best decisions for themselves. It’s about defending the integrity of our elections from fraudulent efforts, like this one that was funded by the Montana Republican Party,’ Luckey says.”

Politico’s Morning Score:

“IN THE STATES — The Montana GOP and two minor party qualification committees broke Montana campaign finance laws ‘in a successful effort to qualify the Green Party of Montana for the primary ballot without the Green Party’s knowledge,’ the AP’s Amy Beth Hanson reported. More: ‘The Republican Party failed to accurately report its $100,000 expenditure to Advanced Micro Targeting on its March 30 committee finance report, [Montana Commissioner of Political Practices Jeff] Mangan found, calling it a technical violation. The Republican Party had acknowledged paying for the signature gathering on March 24.’”
 

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