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Franken Calls for FEC Investigation into Chamber of Commerce Election Activities

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Yesterday, U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) called on the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to investigate reports that foreign corporations may be funding efforts by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to influence elections in this country. He pressed the commission to report its findings and to take any measures necessary to prohibit foreign influence of American elections.

"I am profoundly concerned by recent reports that foreign corporations are indirectly spending significant sums to influence American elections through third-party groups, including 501(c)(6) trade organizations," Sen. Franken wrote. "I am writing to ask that you investigate these claims, enforce existing laws and regulations prohibiting foreign spending in American elections, and strengthen those very laws through new regulations and policy guidance."

In January, Sen. Franken authored the American Elections Act, a bill that would prohibit election expenditures by companies controlled by a foreign corporation or individual. That provision was included as part of the DISCLOSE Act, which would require more complete disclosure of political spending by corporations and other groups.

Sen. Franken's letter to the FEC can be found here.


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