EXCLUSIVE: Matt Gaetz Introduces Legislation To Prevent Campaign Donation Fraud

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Henry Rodgers Chief National Correspondent
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Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz introduced legislation Wednesday that aims to prevent campaign donation fraud by amending the Internal Revenue Code to require a billing address and credit verification value (CVV) for contributions to political organizations.

The Daily Caller first obtained a copy of the bill, which is titled the Put Zombie Donors to Rest Act. The legislation comes after a March 28 report from O’Keefe Media Group, an investigative news organization, that mentions a “national plot to utilize senior citizens matching a similar profile as vehicles to launder millions of dollars into political campaigns.” Zombie donors are unidentified entities or individuals are using the identities of American citizens to commit campaign donation fraud.

Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio sent a letter to the FEC in April regarding potential fraudulent donations from the liberal group Act Blue, to which they responded by saying it “does not impose requirements for specific safety or security guardrails that political committees must use to accept online donations.”

“Through the diligent efforts of citizen journalists, O’Keefe Media Group has uncovered potentially millions of dollars in campaign donation fraud. Unidentified entities or individuals are using the identities of American citizens to perpetrate fraudulent campaign contributions. Termed as ‘zombie donors,’ these fraudulent transactions exploit payment methods that possess scant or negligible identity authentication mechanisms,” Gaetz told the Caller before introducing the bill.

“The ‘Put Zombie Donors to Rest Act’ aims to amend the Internal Revenue Code and mandates the inclusion of both a credit verification value (CVV) and a billing address as mandatory requirements for confirming the donor’s true identity, cross-referencing it with the corresponding address or banking information,” he added.


(DAILY CALLER OBTAINED) — … by Henry Rodgers

“The corporate press, who regularly combs through publicly available FEC data, had an opportunity to uncover this but did not. It took citizen journalists to not just flag the data but to corroborate findings in states across the country. Rep. Gaetz’s bill is a reminder of what journalism can do when in the hands of the people. If it weren’t for the citizen journalists inspired by O’Keefe Media Group’s Maryland investigation who hit the streets and highlighted this apparently fraudulent scheme in other states, we might not have arrived at this moment. This story, however, is far from over and questions remain,” James O’Keefe, the founder and CEO of O’Keefe Media Group said. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: ‘I Am Disappointed’: Ron Johnson Demands Answers From FEC Over Alleged Dem Donor Fraud Scheme)

“I look forward to transparency from Act Blue and other major credit card processors in our political system because through that transparency lies the answer of who may be the funders and architects of this scheme which targets senior citizens,” O’Keefe added. (RELATED: Thieves Steal Thousands From Republican Campaigns)

The Caller contacted the FEC about the legislation to which they did not immediately respond.