In a tasty little bit of schadenfreude, Rep. Joe “I apologize” Barton of Texas has lost some $154,000 of his campaign funds that were invested in the stock market. A big part of that loss was due to the Representative’s penchant for buying funds that go long on energy stocks. With BP’s value falling, it took some of the investments into the tank. I guess when you are willing to supplicate yourself before a big oil company on national T.V. then you are going to stick with investing with them.
The thing that startled me about this story is that you can invest campaign funds at all. The intent of the donor is to give you money to fund your campaign, not for you to take risks with it in the stock market. I can understand the desire, when you are gathering a million dollars or more in a year to maximize the interest you can get, after all no political campaign ever has too much money. Still there is something really not right about being able to put it into the stock market.
"Originally posted at Squarestate.net"
Under the current campaign finance laws, there is no requirement that a campaign committee use all the money for the campaign. There can be all kinds of shenanigans with buying clothes or hair cuts (anyone remember the Wasilla Hillbillies looting Nieman Marcus?) but it is allowed with the idea that if the public does not like the way the candidate is spending the money, well they will not vote for them.