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Obama law tab up to $1.4 million

Posted By Chelsea Schilling On 08/10/2009 @ 8:42 pm In Front Page | Comments Disabled

President Obama may be using his political action committee funds to stomp out eligibility lawsuits brought by Americans, as he has paid more than $1.35 million to his top lawyer since the election.

Obama for America, Obama’s 2008 political campaign, merged with the Democratic National Committee in January and is now known as Organizing for America. The grass-roots army that some refer to as “Obama 2.0″ is still collecting financial contributions

Federal Election Commission records for “Obama for America” show that the lobby organization has paid international law firm Perkins Coie exactly $1,352,378.95 since the 2008 election.

FEC records show the following payments made to the law firm from Oct. 16, 2008, to June 30, 2009:


FEC record for payment to Perkins Coie, 2009 July quarterly report (covers April 1, 2009, to June 30, 2009)

FEC record for payment to Perkins Coie, 2009 July quarterly report (covers April 1, 2009, to June 30, 2009)

FEC record for payment to Perkins Coie, 2009 April quarterly report (covers Jan. 1, 2009, to March 31, 2009)

FEC record for payment to Perkins Coie, 2009 April quarterly report (covers Jan. 1, 2009, to March 31, 2009)

FEC record for payment to Perkins Coie, 2008 year-end report (covers Nov. 25, 2008, to Dec. 31, 2008)

FEC record for payment to Perkins Coie, 2008 post-general election report  (covers Oct 16,  2008, to Nov. 24, 2008)

The FEC shows Obama’s campaign has made regular payments to Perkins Coie since Jan. 1, 2007 – the month he formed a presidential exploratory committee and only weeks before he formally announced his candidacy for president.

In total, Obama has paid Perkins Coie, a single law firm, $2.3 million since he announced his campaign for presidency. By contrast, a cumulative total of all of Sen. John McCain’s legal consulting fees from Jan. 1, 2007, to June 30, 2009, amounts to $1.46 million.

As WND reported, Robert Bauer of Perkins Coie – top lawyer for Obama, Obama’s presidential campaign, the Democratic National Committee and Obama’s Organizing for America – is the same Washington, D.C., lawyer defending President Obama in lawsuits challenging his eligibility to be president.

WND also reported that Bauer sent a letter to plaintiff Gregory Hollister, a retired Air Force colonel, of Hollister v. Soetoro, threatening sanctions if he doesn’t withdraw his appeal of the eligibility case that earlier was tossed by a district judge because the issue already had been “twittered.”

Bauer’s warning was dated April 3 and delivered via letter to the plaintiff’s attorney, John D. Hemenway. It is not the first such warning issued. Lawyers trying to kill a similar California lawsuit filed on behalf of Ambassador Alan Keyes also said they would seek sanctions against the plaintiff’s attorneys in that case unless they left the issue of the president’s eligibility alone.

“For the reasons stated in Judge Robertson’s ruling, the suit is frivolous and should not be pursued,” Bauer’s letter warned. “Should you decline to withdraw this frivolous appeal, please be informed that we intend to pursue sanctions, including costs, expenses and attorneys’ fees, pursuant to Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 38 and D.C. Circuit Rule 38.”

Bauer also represented Obama and the DNC in Philip Berg’s eligibility lawsuit and various other legal challenges. The White House has not responded to WND’s request for comment on the legal fees.

Perkins Coie serves high-profile clients such as Microsoft, Amazon and Starbucks. In 2006, the firm also represented Salim Ahmed Hamdan, Osama bin Laden’s alleged bodyguard and driver.

The FEC allows elected officials to use campaign funds to pay legal fees only if the action/investigations arise as a result of their tenure in office or campaigns, according to Politico.

The FEC report also reveals Obama For America also paid $6,365 in legal fees to Olaker, Biden & Belair, a firm founded by Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden.




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