Democrat Challenging Conservative Congressman Ted Budd Accused of Illegal Coordination

RALEIGH – As election day nears, several close races are beginning to heat up and the U.S. House is ground zero as Democrats pull out all stops in an attempt to steal the majority from Republicans.

One of the races critical for control of the House is the NC-13 race between Rep. Ted Budd (R) and Democrat challenger Kathy Manning. Budd is one of the most conservative members of congress and therefore Democrats are targeting him in particular, even if it means breaking campaign rules apparently.

“The state Republican Party accused the Manning campaign of “illegal coordination” between the campaign and a federally registered political action committee.

The complaint contends that Manning’s principal campaign committee, Kathy Manning for Congress, has coordinated door-to-door efforts with Swing Left, a federal PAC, in violation of Federal Election Commission rules.

The state GOP argues that Swing Left and the Manning campaign are coordinating activities, which isn’t allowed under the way Swing Left is incorporated as a PAC.

“Coordination is found where an outside group makes an expenditure (in) cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate or her authorized committee for the purpose of influencing an election. It is an established principle of campaign finance law that such coordinated expenditures are strictly prohibited,” according to the complaint.”

Democrats are no stranger to dirty tricks during election time. If there is an advantage to be had by breaking the rules, breaking the Republicans’ grip on congress is plenty justification in their eyes to do so.

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The Manning campaign denied the coordination and countered with an accusation that Budd is downplaying his opposition to Obamacare because it’s so popular int he district. It seems a pretty weak retort in the face of allegations of serious campaign coordination violations.

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However, the fact that the N.C. GOP is focusing on Manning does indicate that Budd is at least under threat here. Expect more volatility in this race an others in the coming weeks, and don;t be surprised if the Democrats revert to their dirty politics playbook to get an edge.

Read more here.

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