(InTheseTimes) Spare a thought for those aspiring to be president. The existence of Super PACs, brought to life by the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court decision, offers the tantalizing prospect of being able to raise unlimited amounts of money to be spent on political advertising and other activities during an election. Yet the law forbids any direct coordination between campaigns and said Super PACs, which includes expressly instructing donors to funnel large amounts of their hard-earned money to these entities. The situation must be agonizing.
A recently released internal Clinton campaign memo suggests this needn’t necessarily be the case, however. The document, leaked on Saturday by someone known as "Guccifer 2.0", who claimed responsibility for the hacking of the DNC network last week, shows not only the careful way in which campaign staff must stay within the rules governing campaign coordination with Super PACs, but also suggests how campaigns can subtly get around these rules.
The memo, sent to Clinton’s top campaign staff in March last year by Marc E. Elias, Clinton’s general counsel and a partner at law firm Perkins Coie, outlines instructions for how campaign staff can solicit donations for and talk to donors about the campaign’s preferred Super PACs without running afoul of the FEC. Read another way, however, the memo also serves as a kind of guide for how staff members can provide veiled hints to donors for which Super PACs to direct their "soft money"—or unlimited contributions—to.
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