FACT Call for an Investigation into Campaign of US House Candidate Christy Smith
Evidence Shows Smith refused to disclose information about her campaign staff, even though she was aware of the law
Washington, D.C.— February 25, 2020— The non-partisan ethics watchdog, the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT), today, filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) seeking an immediate investigation into U.S. House candidate Christy Smith and her campaign, Christy Smith for Congress, for failing to disclose any information about her campaign staff during her 2020 campaign.
According to FACT, on October 30, 2019, Christy Smith filed a statement of candidacy announcing her run to represent California’s 25th district, and naming her principal campaign committee, Christy Smith for Congress. She proceeded to file the following campaign required reports for 2019 and 2020 (below).
Year-End 2019 (original filed Jan. 29, 2020; first amendment filed June 11, 2020; and second amendment filed July 15, 2020)
Pre-Primary 2020 (filed Feb. 20, 2020; first amendment filed Mar. 3. 2020; second amendment filed Jun. 11, 2020)
April Quarterly 2020 (filed April 15, 2020; first amendment filed Jun. 11, 2020)
Pre-Run-Off 2020 (filed April 30, 2020; first amendment filed Jun. 11. 2020)
Post-Run-Off 2020 (filed June 11, 2020; first amendment filed July 15, 2020)
July Quarterly 2020 (filed July 15, 2020, first amendment filed July 22, 2020; second amendment filed Oct. 15, 2020)
October Quarterly 2020 (filed Oct. 15. 2020)
Pre-General 2020 (filed Oct. 22, 2020; first amendment filed Dec. 2, 2020)
Post-General 2020 (filed Dec. 3, 2020; First Amendment filed Jan. 29, 2020)
On every filing above, Smith failed to disclose any information about her campaign staff, including their names and salaries. Although she did report payments to Method Campaign Services for “payroll” and “salary,” those were the only payments to staff reported and Smith failed to report the actual and true recipients of the payroll and salary disbursements. The law clearly requires the specific information about who the campaign is paying and what amount.
Moreover, Smith apparently became aware she was not disclosing campaign staff information when the news reported on her failure in November of 2020. Yet, Smith continued to omit the required information from three subsequent reports and the only filing that contained the correct information was Smith’s year-end 2020 report (which only covered November 24 to December 21, 2020).
“The law is very clear--candidates must disclose their campaign staff and salaries in their FEC reports. Not only does this information provide citizens with the ability assess candidates, but it is crucial to identify illegal use of campaign funds such as coordinating with super PACs or using campaign funds for personal purposes. The FEC needs to immediately investigate Smith and her campaign, and ensure that any insufficient reports are corrected and proper penalties are enforced," said Kendra Arnold, Executive Director of FACT.
A full copy of the complaint can be found here.
FACT is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting accountability, ethics, and transparency in government and civic arenas. For more on FACT, visit: www.factdc.org