In a story sure not to make headlines, U.S. watchdogs at the Federal Election Commission fined Vice President Joe Biden for his acceptance of excessive campaign donations during his run for the Democrat nomination for President of the United States.
According to an FEC report, Biden also accepted a discounted price for his flight on a corporate jet. The audit revealed that Biden and his campaign flew on GEH Air Transportation round-trip from New Hampshire and Iowa.
The standard price for that flight, according to the FEC, was about $30,000. Biden and his campaign paid only about $8,000 for trip. The FEC auditors claim that the Biden campaign’s acceptance of the flight was an illegal corporate contribution.
According to the FEC investigators, Vice President Biden’s campaign received more than $100,000 over the legal limit. They also reported that the Biden for President organization failed to report almost $4 million paid out and close to a million dollars in debts.
The Biden office issued a statement claiming the illegal financial activities were a result of sloppy bookkeeping by campaign staff. A spokesperson from the Vice President’s office told reporters yesterday that all fines will be paid.
“Some repayment is commonplace after presidential campaign audits and the repayment ordered here is relatively small. Payment is due to the Treasury 30 days after the FEC issues its formal ruling and Biden for President will comply with that,” said Elizabeth Alexander, a spokeswoman for Biden in the vice president’s office.
“If this was a case involving former Vice President Dick Cheney, it would be splashed on the frontpage of every newspaper in America. But with a Democrat in the White House, the media automatically give Biden a pass,” said political strategist Mike Baker.
Prior to being selected as President Barack Obama’s running mate, Biden campaigned for president before giving up in January 2008 after coming in fifth in the Iowa caucuses.
“If anyone believes that these illegalities were due to sloppiness, I have some swamp land to sell them. Joe Biden has a history of being less than honest — and when he is honest, he puts his foot in his mouth,” said Baker.
Baker points to incidents of plagiarism and fabrication that forced Joe Biden to quit the 1988 presidential race that is practically ignored by members of the news media who prefer to share a chuckle over Biden’s frequent gaffes.
Revelations of plagiarism by Biden were his downfall in 1988. Reporters discovered that Biden had lifted significant portions of speeches from Robert F. Kennedy and Hubert Humphrey, as well as from British politicians.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he’s a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty.