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Ohio: McCain received ballot spot because of federal matching-fund certification

The New York Times reports: Did Senator John McCain of Arizona benefit unfairly from rules that automatically placed him on the ballot in Ohio once he qualified for public campaign financing?

The legal question, which also has political significance given Mr. McCain’s reputation for crusading against the influence of money on elections, is being raised by Democratic Party officials ahead of the Ohio Republican primary next Tuesday now that the McCain campaign has decided to pull out of public financing.

The issue emerged Monday in a complaint that the Democratic National Committee filed with the Federal Election Commission questioning Mr. McCain’s right to withdraw from the system and bypass the spending limits that come with it. ...

Second, the [Democratic] officials object to the way Mr. McCain used his certification for federal matching money to get on the ballot in states like Ohio and Delaware. That certification allowed him to bypass the signature collection usually required to get on the ballot, and saved the campaign money — which should bar him from withdrawing from the system, the Democrats say. -- Democrats Raise Legal Point Over McCain and Ohio as He Opts Out of Public Money - New York Times

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