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Complaint against Save DC Now PAC 
by Brian Lederer
October 22, 2010




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Brian Lederer, Esq.
Law Offices of Brian Lederer
3003 Van Ness Street, NW, Suite #W228
Washington, D.C. 20008
Office: 202-244-1715; fax: 202-244-7833

October 22, 2010

By email: ocf@dc.gov
By Fax: 202-6710658

Cecily E. Collier-Montgomery
Office of Campaign Finance
Government of the District of Columbia
Frank D. Reeves Municipal Center
2000 14th Street, NW
Suite 433
Washington, DC 20009

Re: Request that you demand that Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, as a qualifying candidate under DC Campaign Finance Laws in the November general election for re-election as Mayor, either comply with the law and provide the required campaign filings for this candidacy or provide in writing a cease and desist notification to the Save DC Now committee to immediately stop the use of his name and campaign activity in his behalf.

Dear Director Collier-Montgomery:

Please accept this letter as my request for action by you regarding the candidacy of Mayor Adrian Fenty in the upcoming general election as it is manifested in the Save DC Now Write-In campaign. This committee is an actively working to reelect Mayor Adrian M. Fenty through its write-in vote campaign.

I request that you demand that Mayor Fenty either comply with the law and provide the required campaign filings under this candidacy or that he provide in writing a cease and desist notification to the Save DC Now committee to stop immediately the use of his name and its campaign activity in his behalf.

The law of the District of Columbia makes Mayor Fenty a candidate for election in the general election due to the campaign activities of Save DC Now Pac, Inc., his write-in campaign committee. D. C. Code 1-1011.1(2), D. C. Official Code 2001, defines a candidate as follows:

The term "candidate" means an individual who seeks nomination for election, or election, to office, whether or not such individual is nominated or elected, and, for purposes of this paragraph, an individual shall be deemed to seek nomination for election, or election, if he or she has: (A) obtained or authorized any other person to obtain nominating petitions to qualify himself or herself for nomination for election, or election, to office; (B) received contributions or made expenditures, or has given his or her consent for any other person to receive contributions or make expenditures, with a view to bringing about his or her nomination for election, or election, to office; or (C) reason to know, or knows, that any other person has received contributions or made expenditures for that purpose, and has not notified that person in writing to cease receiving contributions or making expenditures for that purpose; provided, that an individual shall not be deemed a candidate if he notifies each person who has received contributions or made expenditures that such individual is only testing the waters, has not yet made any decision whether to seek nomination or election to public office, and is not a candidate. A person who is deemed to be a candidate for the purposes of this subchapter shall not be deemed, solely by reason of that status, to be a candidate for the purposes of any other federal law. 

The term “office” is defined in DC Code 1-1011.1(3), D.C. Official Code 2001, to be:

The office of Mayor of the District of Columbia, Chairman or member of the Council of the District of Columbia, member of the Board.

Similarly, Mayor Fenty is a candidate as that term is defined in the municipal regulations. 3 DCMR 3002 entitled “CANDIDATE STATUS” declares a candidate to be one as follows:

An individual shall be considered a candidate when the individual performs any of the following acts:

(a) Receives a campaign contribution;

(b) Makes a campaign expenditure;

(c) Obtains nominating petitions;

(d) Authorizes any person to perform any of the above acts; or

(e) Fails to disavow in writing to the Director any of the above acts by any other person within ten (10) days after written notification by the Director. 3 DCMR 3002,1

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty knows or has reason to know of that the Save DC Now Committee are doing several of these acts, including receiving campaign contributions and making campaign expenditures: using Fenty Re-elect 2010 materials from the September 14, 010 primary election, engaging persons from his Fenty 2010 primary campaign to work in the write-in campaign; and raising and spending money on Adrian Fenty’s behalf to re-elect him Mayor as a write-in candidate in the November general election. Even though Mayor Fenty has stated that he is not a candidate in the November general election, he has only made oral statements, but has not, in fact, “notified person [or persons] in writing to cease receiving contributions or making expenditures for that purpose [a write-in campaign to re-elect him as Mayor in the November 2, 2010 general election having failed to win the Democratic primary election in September 2010}.

The campaign is visible and obvious. It formed a DC corporation on September 28, 2010, entitled Save DC Now PAC, Inc (file No. 299257). It is operating through an organization called WriteFentyin with a website at www.writefentyin.com. The website states it is paid for by Save DC Now PAC, Inc. Even though the website alleges it is “not affiliated or endorsed by Adrian Fenty,” it is manifestly a campaign tool, open to everyone, advertised in public literature and sending emails to people, posted on Facebook and Twitter. The website has a photograph of Mayor Fenty, Fenty campaign signs, and links to facilitate the following: volunteering, contributing funds, and participating in the campaign to write-in Mayor Adrian M. Fenty for re-election in this coming November 2, 2010, general election.

Save DC Now PAC, Inc, registered as a Political Action Committee, on September 27, 2010, with the same persons and addresses of the persons forming the corporation. Please note these persons are also persons who were active in the Re-elect Fenty 2010 campaign for nomination as the Democratic candidate for Mayor in the Democratic primary held on September 14, 2010.

On October 10, 2010, this committee filed a Report of Receipts and Expenditures, OCF Identification No. . The Committee raised $4,588 as of that date. Further, the Committee has received substantial in-kind contributions from the primary campaign Committee to Re-elect Mayor Fenty, including campaign stickers and posters being posted on the early voting site at One Judiciary Square.

At the early voting site, the write-in campaign is actively asking voters to write-in Adrian M. Fenty for Mayor on the general election ballot. The committee is offering the use of a rubber stamp with the name on the stamp of: “Adrian M. Fenty.” The committee has posted “Fenty” campaign signs, in support of the write-in, that states “Paid for by Fenty Re-elect 2010, Ben Soto Treasurer, Report Filed with the Director of Campaign Finance.”

The use of the “Fenty” signs is a continual violation of DC law by the Save DC Now campaign committee. D.C. Official Code § 1-1102.10, requires that campaign literature must be identified by the words “paid for by” followed by the name and address of the payer or the committee or other person and its treasurer on whose behalf the materials appear. Enclosed for your review are copies of pictures of the signs presently on display. Four Photographs are attaching showing pictures of these posters and this general election activity on behalf of Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, at the early voting site, One Judiciary Square, to write him in on the general election ballot for Mayor.

Mayor Fenty has reason to know of the existence and operation of this Write-In campaign. There has been an abundance of news reports made on the activities the campaign. There have been reports of the campaign activities in the Washington Post, the radio and neighborhood news papers.

Additionally, many of the Individuals in the campaign were previously paid workers of the Fenty Re-elect Campaign. These people are appearing at events asking voters to write-in Mayor Fenty.

In addition to my request for you to demand Mayor Fenty to comply with the law of candidacy, if Mayor Fenty is not a candidate, then I ask that you further demand Mayor Fenty file the required “Statement of Candidate Withdrawal” form. 3 DCMR 3002.6 requires upon the termination of candidacy the individual shall immediately file this required form.


/s/ Brian Lederer

Brian Lederer

CC: Board of Elections and Ethics

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