Monday, November 3, 2008, 3:57 PM

Larry Norton on NPR: Illegal Campaign Donations Spur Calls For Change

From NPR.org, Election 2008: Money, Media & Influence:

Peter Overby discusses The New Frontier of Online Political Fundraising in this edition of All Things Considered on October 31, 2008.

As Barack Obama's fundraising machine leaves the old milestones for political money in the dust, some mysterious would-be donors have turned up among the 3.1 million contributors. The oddities raise questions about both the campaign's vetting procedures and the archaic state of campaign finance laws.

Almost all of the strange contributions came over the Internet — a fundraising tool that Obama has used far more effectively than any other politician.

Yet at this point in the campaign, there's no great legal incentive for the Obama campaign to ramp up its vetting process and divert workers from urgent pre-election jobs.

Campaign finance lawyer Larry Norton should know; he's a former chief counsel to the Federal Election Commission. "Look, they can deal with the FEC after he's elected president," he says. "The system is very deliberately set up so all this is worked out after the elections are over."

To read and listen to the entire interview click here.
back to top