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Trump making illegal secret payments, including to his own family, election watchdog group alleges

HuffPost reports:

President Donald Trump’s campaign is violating federal election law by funneling close to a quarter-billion dollars to date through private companies in order to hide the ultimate recipients of the money, including the wife of one of his sons and the girlfriend of another, a watchdog group charged in a complaint filed Tuesday.

“The money is being laundered through corporations run by top Trump campaign officials,” said Brendan Fischer, a lawyer with the Campaign Legal Center. “That has the effect of keeping the public in the dark as to a big chunk of Trump campaign spending.”

The group’s complaint with the Federal Election Commission asks for an investigation to put an end to the practice and to punish the campaign with fines.

How quickly any of that might happen, though, is an open question, given that the commission currently does not have a quorum to take official actions. Even with one in place, investigations can last for several years.

According to the complaint, both Trump’s reelection campaign and a related fundraising group, the “Trump Make America Great Again Committee,” are breaking federal campaign law by running payments through former Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale’s private firm as well as American Made Media Consultants, a company created specifically to place ads and buy related services for the campaign. [Continue reading…]

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