The Tennessee Democratic Party will pay a six-figure fine after admitting to misreporting millions in campaign funds during the 2016 election cycle.
According to the Federal Election Commission (FEC), commissioners voted in January that they had “reason to believe that the Tennessee Democratic Party violated” the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 by “failing to report total receipts and disbursements,” and “failing to maintain monthly payroll logs.”
They found that “during the 2016 election cycle, the [Party] Committee failed to disclose receipts and disbursements totaling $2,739,911 on its original reports filed with the commission.” Though the state democrats eventually filed amended reports disclosing $2,444,107, they didn’t disclose the missing $295,804 until the FEC audited their records.
The documents stated that the liberals did not bother to itemize “$1,509,766 in contributions” from joint fundraising activity that exceeded the $200 itemization threshold, nor did they correctly report an “unitemized $78,999 fundraising contribution.”
The Dems settled the investigation with a $103,000 fine for the cumulative $3,677,981 in misreported activity and committed to attend mandatory reporting training.
FEC Commissioner Ellen Weintraub doesn’t think that the fine was steep enough. “These extensive violations merited a higher penalty,” the Democratic appointee stated.
“The penalty in this matter deviates from and is below what the Commission would normally seek or accept,” she wrote on August 27. “Fair, proportionate, and consistent penalties are a hallmark of a credible enforcement program.”
Weintraub noted that the “penalty in this matter deviates from and is below what the Commission would normally seek or accept,” which will not deter the Tennesse Democrats from committing the same violations in the future.
“Inconsistent and inappropriately low penalties such as the one in this matter amount to little more than the cost of doing business,” she concluded.