November 17, 2014 8:19 am -

Republicans and outside groups used Twitter to share election polling data during the midterm election cycle. Laws against this kind of coordination might render this illegal.


The practice is the latest effort in the quest by political operatives to exploit the murky world of campaign finance laws at a time when limits on spending in politics are eroding and regulators are being defanged.

The law says that outside groups, such as super PACs and non-profits, can spend freely on political causes as long as they don’t coordinate their plans with campaigns. Sharing costly internal polls in private, for instance, could signal to the campaign committees where to focus precious time and resources…

A typical tweet read: “CA-40/43-44/49-44/44-50/36-44/49-10/16/14-52–>49/476-10s.” The source said posts like that — which would look like gibberish to most people — represented polling data for various House races.Posting the information on Twitter, which is technically public, could provide a convenient loophole to the law — or could run afoul of it.

“It’s a line that has not been defined. This is really on the cutting edge,” said Paul S. Ryan, senior counsel at the Campaign Legal Center, a nonpartisan organization focused on campaign finance issues. “It might not be legal. It’s a cutting edge practice that, to my knowledge, the Federal Election Commission has never before addressed to explicitly determine its legality or permissibility.”[su_csky_ad]

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

3 responses to Republicans Used Twitter To Stretch Election Laws

  1. Tommy6860 November 17th, 2014 at 8:31 am

    Wow! It won’t matter anyway as it will get shoved through the court systems infinitely if someone wants to make a stink of it.

    As an aside, I had a hard time following the video aspect of the article, as that guy has some serious fangs.

  2. Candide Thirtythree November 17th, 2014 at 8:32 am

    Everyone already knew that the republicans used hundreds of cheating techniques, there is no way that they can win a free and fair election, this is just another bit of corruption that they will never be made to answer for.

  3. Obewon November 17th, 2014 at 9:32 am

    Nearly 100 Repub party officials and politicians are convicted or pleaded guilty, for one Dem politician similarly convicted. Only the dumbest voters today enable their (R) shitheads party never having any realistic ideas or success in the entire 21st century! Just ask GWB’s 80+ GOP Felons convicted including Pleaded Guilty Felony Briber VP Cheney, VP Cheney’s Chief of Staff, or the Jack Abramoff Felon’s.