The 5-1 vote by the Federal Election Commission permits lawmakers to use donors’ cash for “bona fide, legitimate, professional personal security” in opposition to threats that come up as half of their jobs.

The motion got here in response to a request from officers with the National Republican Congressional Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee and falls in line with previous FEC actions that enable politicians to use campaign cash to improve safety at their houses.

But the fee spent hours of their on-line assembly tussling over how to correctly outline safety personnel after Democratic legal professionals raised the specter of some lawmakers utilizing donors’ cash to pay right-wing militia members.

In a Wednesday letter to the fee, Marc Elias and different attorneys representing Democratic campaign committees urged regulators to craft the rules narrowly in order that “campaign funds are not improperly used to fund groups organized to harass and intimidate political opponents.”

“In the past election cycle, some individuals who are now Members of Congress displayed troubling ties to extremist groups, including some self-proclaimed ‘militias,’ such as the Proud Boys, the Oath Keepers, and the Three Percenters,” the Democratic legal professionals wrote. “In some cases, these groups purported to provide ‘security’ at events attended by Congressional candidates and Members of Congress.”

One Democrat on the fee, Ellen Weintraub, mentioned she was involved about lawmakers working at a far take away from their constituents and that untrained guards might improperly block the general public from participating with elected officers.

“I never thought of us as a country where the leadership of the country had to be surrounded by armed guards and … needed to keep the public at arm’s length,” Weintraub mentioned.

But Jessica Furst Johnson, a lawyer representing the Republican campaign committees, mentioned lawmakers have urgent safety considerations.

The threats they face, she retorted, don’t contain “people who are showing up at homes in the middle of the night to have a nice conservation about legislation. We are talking about situations where members are, unfortunately, feeling threatened with their children in their homes in the middle of the night.”


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