Sen. Ted Cruz is considered the foremost constitutional scholar of the Senate. He is recognized for his mastery of law—and is often relied on by his colleagues for his know-how.
Even before he was elected to the Senate, he made cases before the highest court in the land. And his latest crusade could have dramatic repercussions on political campaigns.
The FEC went after Cruz when he used a portion of his own money to fund his reelection campaign. After his victory, he paid himself back with money from his now-finished campaign.
The FEC actually tried to fine him, saying that the amount was higher than the limits allowed by a 2002 law. So, Cruz fought back and now the Supreme Court will hear his arguments.
From Roll Call:
The Supreme Court hears oral argument Wednesday in Sen. Ted Cruz’s challenge to a relatively obscure campaign finance provision, in another case that pits the free speech rights of candidates against a law meant to limit the influence of money in politics…
The provision Cruz challenged puts a $250,000 limit on candidates for the use of campaign contributions, made after the election has happened, for the sole purpose of repaying the candidate’s personal campaign loans.
Cruz is challenging what appears to be a ridiculous limit in campaign financing. He loaned himself money so he could run his reelection campaign. That money was his, given to his campaign. All he was doing was paying himself back. But hard-nosed figures in D.C. consider that a “gift,” which makes it illegal according to law.
Imagine that. Giving yourself back money that you owned is considered a gift. Are they joking?
Such a restraint could prevent people from running for public office because they are being limited in how and how much they can fundraise. You can clearly see how some parties would try to exploit these kinds of rules to discourage challengers.
Parts of the law in question have already been eliminated in previous rulings. Mitch McConnell urged the court to take up this case from Cruz, hoping that they will wipe out what is left of this law.
It seems this law could benefit Democrats more than Republicans. Liberals often rely on large donations from the Hollywood elite and other rich benefactors. It is understood that these donations will not be paid back. But a Republican, who cannot rely on rich elitists from LA, can’t count on such contributions.
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