It looks like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the golden girl of the Democratic Party, might be in some serious trouble, according to a new report from The Daily Caller. According to the report, Ocasio-Cortez and her chief of staff Saikat Chakrabarti appear to have been in control of Justice Democrats PAC from December 2017 through her primary campaign victory in June 2018. Justice Democrats PAC donated heavily to her campaign, and that support was crucial for her victory.
If the Federal Election Commission (FEC) finds that the New York Democrat’s campaign operated in affiliation with the PAC, which had raised more than $1.8 million before her June 2018 primary, it would open them up to “massive reporting violations, probably at least some illegal contribution violations exceeding the lawful limits,” former FEC commissioner Brad Smith said.
Ocasio-Cortez never disclosed to the FEC that she and Chakrabarti, who served as her campaign chair, controlled the PAC while it was simultaneously supporting her primary campaign, and former FEC commissioners say the arrangement could lead to multiple campaign finance violations. The group backed 12 Democrats during the 2018 midterms, but Ocasio-Cortez was the only one of those to win her general election.
“If the facts as alleged are true, and a candidate had control over a PAC that was working to get that candidate elected, then that candidate is potentially in very big trouble and may have engaged in multiple violations of federal campaign finance law, including receiving excessive contributions,” former Republican FEC commissioner Hans von Spakovsky told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Brad Smith, a former FEC commissioner, says that if a complaint were to be filed, he thinks “it would trigger a serious investigation,” and potentially result in jail time for Ocasio-Cortez and Chakrabarti.