In case you weren’t aware, there is a United States law that prohibits members of Congress from soliciting donations “while in any room or building occupied in the discharge of official duties.” In case you weren’t aware of this either, pretty much none of Trump’s Senate cronies care much at all about actually adhering to this law — much like the multitude of other laws that these people seem to believe just don’t apply to them.
None other than South Carolina Senator and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee Lindsey Graham might quite the example out of himself when speaking to reporters after coming out of the third day of confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett — during which he unabashedly violated the aforementioned law by urging South Carolina votes who are “excited about Judge Barrett” to donate to his reelection campaign while still standing in the Senate building.
“I don’t know how much it affected fundraising today, but if you want to help me close the gap, LindseyGraham.com,” the Senator said on camera. “A little bit goes a long way.”
“The bottom line is my opponent raised $57 million. Congratulations to him, that’s the most anybody’s ever raised in the history of the Senate,” he added, pretty clearly unconcerned about the law he was breaking. “I raised $28 million, the most any Republican has ever raised. I think the contest in South Carolina has taken on sort of a national profile. I think in my case is that I stood up for Kavanaugh, and that made some people pretty upset on the left.”
Aída Chávez of The Intercept posted footage of Graham’s plea for donation and pointed the Senator’s violation of the law:
Sen. Graham: “I think people in South Carolina are excited about Judge Barrett. I don’t know how much it affected fundraising today, but if you want to help me close the gap…I think the contest in South Carolina has taken on sort of a national profile.” pic.twitter.com/ufW1G0nT71
— aída chávez (@aidachavez) October 14, 2020
It’s illegal to solicit campaign contributions inside a federal building.
— aída chávez (@aidachavez) October 15, 2020
Attorney Marc Elias retweeted the video, pointing to 18 U.S. Code § 607, adding, “Senator Graham might need a lawyer.”
Senator Graham might need a lawyer: “It shall be unlawful for…Members of Congress, to solicit or receive a donation of money or other thing of value in connection with a Federal election, while in any room or building occupied in the discharge of official duties.” 18 USC 607 https://t.co/raJEztmn66
— Marc E. Elias (@marceelias) October 15, 2020
Ryan Grim, also with The Intercept, noted that “ senators leave their offices and make fundraising calls from their cars (no, really) because it’s a crime to solicit contributions inside a federal building. Doing it on camera is next-level.”
Not that Barr will prosecute this, but senators leave their offices and make fundraising calls from their cars (no, really) because it’s a crime to solicit contributions inside a federal building.
Doing it on camera is next-level. https://t.co/OfUPkuUICA
— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) October 14, 2020
Rep. Eric Swalwell also weighed in, writing on Twitter, “This is a crime. Lindsey Graham committed a crime in plain sight.”
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) October 15, 2020
Frankly, we’re getting sick and tired of watching the Republicans commit these atrocities in broad daylight with absolutely no repercussions.