Keeping SuperPACs Honest
TENNESSEE CITIZEN ACTION CALLS FOR INVESTIGATION
INTO FOX CAMPAIGN AND CITIZEN SUPER PAC
PUBLIC INTEREST GROUP SAYS FOX, BROTHER BRINGING
‘THE WASHINGTON WAY’ TO NASHVILLE MAYOR’S RACE
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee Citizen Action, a nonprofit public interest organization based in Nashville, today filed a petition with the Davidson County District Attorney General seeking an investigation into potential campaign finance misconduct involving the David Fox for Mayor campaign and Citizen Super PAC, funded by Fox’s brother, Connecticut hedge-fund investor George Fox.
Based on media reports and legal research, Tennessee Citizen Action believes campaign finance misconduct has occurred due to apparent coordination between the Fox campaign and Citizen Super PAC, which would violate a number of laws and potentially result in civil and criminal penalties.
Through the petition and in letters to the Fox campaign and the Austin, Texas-based Citizen Super PAC, Tennessee Citizen Action has asked the following individuals to give statements and answer questions, under oath and under penalty of perjury, about their knowledge of the super PAC’s support of the Fox campaign:
- David Fox
- George Fox
- Staff and consultants to the Fox campaign
- Staff and consultants to Citizen Super PAC
“Our petition outlines a number of facts that we believe warrant investigation by the district attorney,” said Andy Spears, executive director of Tennessee Citizen Action. “While the investigation is underway, we call on David Fox and others to immediately step forward to participate in depositions and provide affidavits so the public can determine who knew what and when regarding coordination between the Fox campaign and Citizen Super PAC.”
Due to the multi-state nature of the apparent coordination between the Fox campaign and Citizen Super PAC, and given that the super PAC is a federally registered super PAC, Tennessee Citizen Action believes the case may warrant additional scrutiny by the Federal Election Commission and federal law enforcement authorities. Earlier this year, the federal government criminally prosecuted a political operative for illegal coordination between a super PAC and a candidate campaign. The U.S. Justice Department and the FBI have been stepping up scrutiny of super PACs and campaigns.
“David Fox talks a lot about ‘The Nashville Way,'” said Gerard Stranch, legal advisor to Tennessee Citizen Action. “But the reality is, flooding Nashville with super PAC money is ‘The Washington Way.’ Nashville deserves better.”
Here’s the petition we filed: Petition — Fox-Funk 2015