I don’t often agree with Barack Obama but he is exactly right about this:
The President opposed the Citizens United decision. He understood that with the dramatic growth in opportunities to raise and spend unlimited special-interest money, we would see new strategies to hide it from public view. He continues to support a law to force full disclosure of all funding intended to influence our elections, a reform that was blocked in 2010 by a unanimous Republican filibuster in the U.S. Senate. And the President favors action—by constitutional amendment, if necessary—to place reasonable limits on all such spending.
But this cycle, our campaign has to face the reality of the law as it currently stands.
Just because you disagree with the DH doesn’t mean an American League manager should make his pitcher bat.
The NYT uses an interesting turn of phrase:
President Obama is signaling to wealthy Democratic donors that he wants them to start contributing to an outside group supporting his re-election, reversing a long-held position as he confronts a deep financial disadvantage on a vital front in the campaign.
The Billion Dollar Man has a financial disadvantage? Say it isn’t so.
Now I don’t have a problem with the president playing by the current law even as he claims he wants it changed. I’ve always thought it was disingenuous when the left attacked Social security and Medicare recipients who supported the tea party for taking the payments allowed them by law.
The real story here isn’t that he is taking the money, but they whys and wherefores listed by Politico (emphasis mine)
But that wasn’t enough, sources say, to pull in major players such as George Soros, Peter Lewis, Steve Bing and others into the game. And many top Democratic donors were afraid of giving to Priorities USA until Obama made clear he wouldn’t stand on the sidelines and criticize their efforts
And THAT is the bottom line. All of those who say that this president doesn’t run to the voice of Soros & co will either be spinning or ignoring this.
And politico story has this interesting line too:
Obama’s top campaign staff and even some Cabinet members will appear at super PAC events.
I’m sure Chuck Schumer will be all over this in his hearings over coordination between Super Pacs and campaigns, as he put it:
“It doesn’t pass the smell test to say some of these groups aren’t coordinated”.
If you don’t remember the story, he is the old Powerline post in full, for some odd reason his archives from May-Dec 2008 don’t exist but I found a print version online
Who is John Galt?
October 23, 2008 Posted by Scott at 6:52 AM
We’ve previously noted the gusher of illegal campaign contributions flowing into the Obama campaign from contributors such as “Doodad Pro” and “Good Will.” More recently, incidents have been reported in which people have seen credit card charges surface suggesting they donated to Barack Obama when they did not. Matthew Mosk and Sarah Cohen noted one such incident earlier this week:
Now comes the story of Mary T. Biskup, of Manchester, Missouri. Biskup got a call recently from the Obama campaign, which was trying to figure out why she donated $174,800 to the campaign — well over the contribution limit of $2,300.
The answer she gave them was simple. “That’s an error.”
Is the Obama campaign knowingly receiving illegal contributions? Yesterday one of our readers reported the results of an experiment he conducted:
I’ve read recent reports of the Obama campaign receiving donations from dubious names and foreign locales and it got me wondering: How is this possible?
I run a small Internet business and when I process credit cards I’m required to make sure the name on the card exactly matches the name of the customer making the purchase. Also, the purchaser’s address must match that of the cardholders. If these don’t match, then the payment isn’t approved. Period. So how is it possible that the Obama campaign could receive donations from fictional people and places? Well, I decided to do a little experiment. I went to the Obama campaign website and entered the following:
Name: John Galt
Address: 1957 Ayn Rand Lane
City: Galts Gulch
Then I checked the box next to $15 and entered my actual credit card number and expiration date (it didn’t ask for the 3-didgit code on the back of the card) and it took me to the next page and… “Your donation has been processed. Thank you for your generous gift.”
This simply should not, and could not, happen in any business or any campaign that is honestly trying to vet it’s donors. Also, I don’t see how this could possibly happen without the collusion of the credit card companies. They simply wouldn’t allow any business to process, potentially, hundreds of millions in credit card transactions where the name on the card doesn’t match the purchasers name.
In short, with the system set up as it is by the Obama camp, an individual could donate unlimited amounts of money by simply making up fake names and addresses. And Obama is doing his best to facilitate this fraud. This is truly scandalous.
Our reader was not yet done. He tried the experiment on the McCain site: “I tried the exact same thing at the McCain site and it didn’t allow the transaction.” He then repeated the experiment at the Obama site:
I went back to the Obama site and made three additional donations using the names Osama Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and Bill Ayers, all with different addresses. All the transactions went through using the same credit card. I saved screenshots of the transactions.
Our reader reports, incidentally, that he was using his MasterCard for the contributions. We submit this report in the spirit of inquiry and would especially appreciate hearing from readers who can illuminate how credit card procedures might (or might not) allow this to happen.
UPDATE: Readers have replicated the experiment reported in this post. We will have to revisit the issue tonight or tomorrow and appreciate any information you can provide in the meantime.
CLARIFICATION: Many readers point out that the Obama campaign would exercise some control over the security level required to verify small dollar transactions and that no collusion with the card issuer or bank is therefore required. Mark Steyn elaborates here. Mark explains the question of security settings and then adds:
As the Powerline reader has noted, if “John Galt” of “Ayn Rand Lane” attempts a contribution at the McCain campaign, it gets rejected. Which is just as well. If the Republican candidate’s website were intentionally set up to facilitate fraudulent donations, it would be on the front page of The New York Times. But, as it’s King Barack the Spreader, we can rest assured the crack investigative units will be too preoccupied with Governor Palin’s shoes over the next two weeks.
It is a point that needs making and that could be made every day.