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Arizona senator hit with yet another fine for yet another election law violation

Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ) has paid thousands of dollars after investigators found she didn’t comply with election finance laws.

By Dan Desai Martin - August 21, 2019
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Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ)

An investigation by the Federal Election Commission found Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ) violated election law by not properly reporting more than $50,000 in campaign donations, according to a Feb. 11 letter from the FEC to the McSally campaign.

During her 2014 House reelection campaign, McSally failed to report $54,300 in campaign contributions in the required 48-hour window near the end of the campaign. As a result, the FEC levied a $5,028 fine, which the McSally campaign paid in March 2019.

This violation is not the first run-in the McSally team has had with the FEC.

In June, the AP reported the FEC levied a $23,000 fine against the McSally campaign for a separate election law violation.

The McSally campaign was slapped with that fine because it accepted more than $315,000 in campaign contributions beyond the limit allowed by law. Further, the campaign failed to properly disclose $33,000 in contributions from political action committees.

The $5,028 fine has not been previously reported.

“Martha McSally has been dishonest with Arizonans since she first ran for Congress in 2012, including by hiding donors and taking hundreds of thousands in illegal campaign contributions,” Brad Bainum, Arizona Democratic Party spokesperson, told Shareblue. “Arizonans deserve better from elected officials than McSally’s repeated campaign finance lawbreaking.”

Yet another fine for another campaign finance violation comes amidst a string of bad news for the McSally campaign.

On Tuesday, a new Arizona poll showed McSally trailing Democrat Mark Kelly by 5 points. The same poll previously showed McSally leading in both February and May.

“While Mark is building a strong campaign with record-breaking grassroots support, McSally is being dragged down by her toxic record and is on track to lose another Senate race,” Stewart Boss, spokesperson for the Senate Democratic campaign arm, told the Washington Examiner after the poll came out.

On top of bad polling, McSally also lags behind Kelly when it comes to fundraising. Even though incumbents usually have a fundraising advantage, Kelly outraised McSally in the most recent reporting period and has $1.5 million more in the bank than McSally.

Voters in Arizona already rejected McSally at the polls in 2018, when she was defeated by Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema. McSally is now a senator because she was appointed to the position by the state’s Republican governor to finish out the term of the late Sen. John McCain.

Between campaign finance scandals, bad polling, and lackluster fundraising, McSally has a tough road ahead if she wants to keep the seat that was handed to her.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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