Eric Swalwell Might Be In Hot Water Legally After Bombshell Report

In 2023, the campaign of Representative Eric Swalwell (D-CA) reported expenditures exceeding $2.1 million, as per filings with the Federal Election Commission.

The spending covered a range of activities including international trips, upscale dining, luxury spa visits, chauffeured vehicles, childcare, and other expenses.

Out of the total expenses, over $430,000 were allocated to travel, as indicated by campaign records. A portion of this, approximately $13,000, was expended on international visits to countries like the United Kingdom, Germany, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates. Furthermore, nearly $350,000 of the travel costs were associated with services outside of California.

“Since campaign funds are not taxpayer dollars and donations are not tax-deductible, the best way to hold a candidate responsible is to quit donating to them,” Adam Andrzejewski, founder of the nonprofit, nonpartisan watchdog, told Just the News.

“Historically, oversight bodies have given wide latitude to political expenditures because the donations are from the private sector and the gifts come from after-tax money,” he said.

Madeleine Hubbard reported:

It appears that Swalwell also spent nearly $29,800 on Sunny’s Executive Sedan, which bills itself as a “first class chauffeur experience.” They provide clients with top class cars, ranging from Mercedes S-Class coupes to Cadillac Escalades…

Additionally, Swalwell’s campaign spent more than $20,000 on expenses marked as gifts and gestures, records show.

House rules allow members to “use campaign funds to purchase such nominal-value gifts for the Member’s supporters or contributors.” Although it is unclear whether multiple gifts were purchased at the same time, nearly 45% of the gift expenses were listed as being $100 or more.

The extraordinary expenses extend beyond gifts and travel. Swalwell’s campaign spent more than $54,000 on childcare expenses in Iowa, California and Washington, D.C., records show. Swalwell has three children between the ages of six and two.

Campaign funds are raised through contributions from individuals, organizations, political action committees (PACs), and other sources. These funds are distinct from taxpayer dollars, which are collected by the government through taxes and used for public spending. Campaign funds are private money raised to support the activities and initiatives of political candidates or parties.

Donations to political campaigns are not tax-deductible. This means that individuals or entities who donate to political campaigns cannot deduct these contributions from their taxable income. The IRS does not allow deductions for contributions to political parties, political campaigns, or candidates because these donations are considered personal rather than charitable expenses.

Since campaign funds come from private sources and are not subject to the same scrutiny as taxpayer dollars, the accountability mechanism for candidates regarding the use of these funds can be limited by official oversight. As Andrzejewski suggests, one of the primary ways for donors to hold candidates accountable for their use of campaign funds is by choosing to support or withdraw their financial contributions based on their assessment of the candidate’s spending practices and adherence to ethical standards.

In the U.S., political campaign spending is regulated by laws and overseen by bodies such as the Federal Election Commission (FEC). These regulations define how campaign funds can be raised and spent. However, Andrzejewski notes that there has historically been a broad interpretation of what constitutes allowable expenditures, partly because these funds are privately sourced.

Campaigns can spend money on a wide range of activities deemed necessary for electioneering, such as advertising, travel, staff salaries, and office expenses, among others.

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