Bost out-raises challenger as Democratic camp comes under scrutiny
With the specter of allegations hovering over his Democratic opponent’s campaign, Illinois Rep. Mike Bost definitively out-raised challenger C.J. Baricevic during the July quarterly period, the Federal Election Commission recently announced from St. Louis.
While Republican Bost raised $332,919 compared to trial lawyer Baricevic's $201,938, the commission also reported that Bost has $1,041,005 cash on hand, but that Baricevic’s camp has only $417,411.
Bost’s competitor’s camp previously contended that Bost’s figures relied on contributions from outside the district boundaries; however, a national nonprofit watchdog group challenged that claim in June and has called for an investigation by the Federal Elections Commission (FEC).
The Washington, D.C.-based Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT) filed a complaint against a Belleville law firm, Keefe, Keefe & Unsell PC, alleging that the group used secretaries and other low-level staff as “straw men” to fund Baricevic’s campaign balance in what they considered to be unethical fundraising tactics.
FACT strives to “shine a light on unethical behavior” and strengthen democracy. FEC records revealed that each of six law firm employees gave the amount of $2,700 apiece, all on the same day in March, to Baricevic.
As his Democratic opponent’s camp faces possible investigation, Bost’s candidacy stands squarely placed at an inherent advantage for the upcoming November election. Federal Election Commission public affairs specialist Julia Queen said that the enforcement process is confidential, but she was able to confirm that the FEC did receive the complaint.