Rep. Andrea Salinas’ campaign appears to have unethically accepted or misreported funds from ‘La Mota’, a large cannabis retailer in Oregon
Washington, D.C.— February 5th, 2024 — Today, the non-partisan ethics watchdog, the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT), filed a complaint requesting the Federal Election Commission (FEC) investigate and take appropriate enforcement actions to address apparent violations of the Federal Election Campaign Act by Andrea Salinas; Salinas’s campaign committee, Andrea Salinas for Oregon; the joint fundraising committee, Salinas Victory Fund; and a contributor described in Salinas’s campaign and joint fundraising committee’s FEC filings as “La Mota.”
It appears that Salinas’ various reelection groups either accepted prohibited contributions from an LLC or inadequately disclosed contributions from an LLC that hid the individuals responsible for making the contributions. Both of these would be violations of federal law.
Andrea Salinas’ campaign committee (Andrea Salinas for Oregon) and her joint fundraising committee (Salinas Victory Fund) both reported that they accepted contributions in the amount of $1,000 from ‘La Mota’, the second largest cannabis dispensary chain in Oregon with 37 retail licenses. The ‘La Mota’ founders and network have been at the center of numerous scandals and lawsuits, including being the subject of federal investigations, up to $7 million of state and federal tax liens, and lawsuits by numerous former business partners and vendors in civil lawsuits alleging up to $1.7 million in unpaid bills. The group has also contributed to multiple political campaigns and has appeared to improperly hold influence over statewide elected officials—the chief example being a scandal that led to the resignation of Oregon's Secretary of State after they contracted to pay her $10,000 per month.
“Evidence that the Salinas campaign committee and her joint fundraising committee either accepted an illegal contribution from an LLC or improperly reported funds from ‘La Mota’ are provided from their own FEC filings, which clearly do not inform the public as to the true source of the funds. What makes this case even more troublesome is the suspected contributor's involvement in significant political scandals and numerous legal issues—with which the campaign obviously would not want to be publicly associated. We urge the FEC to investigate and impose the proper penalties to deter future violations.” said Kendra Arnold, Executive Director of FACT.
A full copy of the complaint can be found here.
FACT is a nonprofit organization promoting accountability, ethics, and transparency in government and civic arenas. For more on FACT, visit: http://www.factdc.org/