Broadcast Media Outlets Continue to Ignore Obama's Campaign Financing Scandal
While President Obama's record-breaking pace to raising a total of $1 billion earlier this month received significant media attention, there was little if any curiosity among the traditional press about how he was on track to achieve such an unprecedented milestone in presidential fundraising. The broadcast networks in particular have not bothered to mention the growing scandal that is being scrupulously pieced together by alternative media outlets.
An independently-owned website Obama.com (redirects to official site here) has been suspected of accepting millions of dollars worth of illegal foreign donations for months now. Despite all the speculation and accusations coming from a nonprofit organization known as the Government Accountability Institute (GAI), no action had been taken until recently.
In accordance with American laws, the Chinese government reportedly made the decision to block access to the site recently. After filing an investigative report titled America The Vulnerable last month, GAI founder and co-chairman Steve Bannon offered his reaction. “It’s a shocking revelation that the Chinese government wants to do something that the Obama campaign wouldn't do," he said. "They’re more sensitive to American sovereignty and campaign-finance law than the Obama campaign.”
US Code - Section 441E clearly states:
It shall be unlawful for - (1) a foreign national, directly or indirectly, to make - (A) a contribution or donation of money or other thing of value, or to make an express or implied promise to make a contribution or donation, in connection with a Federal, State, or local election; (B) a contribution or donation to a committee of a political party; or (C) an expenditure, independent expenditure, or disbursement for an electioneering communication.
To be fair, the GAI's thorough analysis found that campaigns at any level and from both major parties have lacked the sufficient security required to fully comply with federal law. Obama.com's online fundraising seems to be more vulnerable than most, however. For example, the website in question does not require users to input their credit card validation (CCV) code, which is meant to reduce fraud and identify location.
What's more, the GAI counted over $2 million in campaign donations to have been collected from non-existent ZIP codes this year alone. Additionally, an estimated 68 percent of the web traffic have foreign IP addresses, according to an industry leading web analytics group called MarkosWeb.
A more in-depth investigation into the matter has yielded interesting results.
The New York Post put the website to the test, finding out that a British citizen like Chris Walker could make donations with relative ease. Inputting his actual street address, Walker chose Arkansas as his home state but used a New York ZIP code. The same experiment did not work on Republican candidate Mitt Romney's fundraising web page.
Multiple sources like The Daily Caller and The Washington Examiner have reported that Obama.com was registered in September of 2008 to an influential campaign bundler named Robert Roche. The former Chicago resident now resides in Shanghai, China, where he is an executive for an infomercial company that specializes in fitness equipment, cell phones and, I kid you not, breast enhancement products.
Breitbart.com obtained seating arrangements from the State Dinner for Chinese President Hu Jintao in 2011, where Roche could be found at the VIP table. The extent of the connection between Roche and Obama is still unknown.
A similar scandal was reported by none other than The Washington Post back in 2008, when the Obama-Biden campaign effort allowed donors to use "largely untraceable prepaid credit cards that could potentially be used to evade limits on how much an individual is legally allowed to give or to mask the contributor's identity." No official charges were filed, and the Post has failed to follow up this time around.
A wealth of information has been provided thus far, but the major broadcast networks continue to ignore the story. One would have to assume that is for fear that it would hurt their candidate of choice's re-election chances.