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McCain may soon get an FEC to vote to give him public funds

The Washington Independent reports: Throughout this presidential primary season, the Federal Election Commission, which polices spending on campaigns for Congress and the presidency, has been dormant. This has created a dilemma for Sen. John McCain R-Ariz. , the presumed Republican nominee for president.

David Mason, the chairman of the FEC and a Republican, had questioned whether McCain could opt out of public funding for the presidential primary after using the promise of public money to get a loan. Mason, though, is but one of two current commissioners for a federal government panel that s supposed to have six members-- three Democrats and three Republicans-- and requires the approval of four commissioners to issue rulings or allot money to candidates. Without a commission ruling, McCain has proceeded to spend $80 million -- about $30 million more than allowed for candidates on public money.

McCain has a second FEC issue. While he opted out of federal financing for the primary season, he is expecting to take advantage of public funding for the general election. So he needs a working commission to sign off on providing his general election money.

A flurry of FEC-related activity in the past two weeks now suggests that McCain's dilemma is about to be solved. President George W. Bush has nominated enough commissioners to get create a working six-member FEC. But Mason is not one of them. -- Return of the FEC - The Washington Independent - U.S. news and politics - washingtonindependent.com

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