A straw donor is a person who illegally uses another person's money to make a political contribution in their own name. In the United States, making a political contribution in another person's name is illegal, as is agreeing to be the named donor with someone else's money. For example, a straw donor may contribute to a political campaign before being reimbursed by another, who is using that person as a conduit to exceed the limits on campaign contributions under the laws of a jurisdiction.
In federal elections in the United States, straw donor schemes are illegal under 2 U.S.C. § 441f, which states:
No person shall make a contribution in the name of another person or knowingly permit his name to be used to effect such a contribution, and no person shall knowingly accept a contribution made by one person in the name of another person.
This section was enacted as part of the Federal Election Campaign Act in 1971.
- NewsOn6, The Associated Press, "Stipe Investigated In Alleged 'Straw Donor' Scheme," http://kotv.com/news/local/story/?id=122067#, Accessed 8/6/2008
- NewsOK.com, Tony Thornton and Nolan Clay, "FBI says straw donors backed others," http://newsok.com/article/3024944?pg=2, Accessed 8/10/08
- 2 U.S.C. § 441f
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