Dangerous Donors

Usually supporters earn their money before they give it away.Thinking he had nothing to hide, Obama decided to let his hefty list of “bundlers” go public, forgetting, in the process, that transparency doesn’t impress when it shows that your donors are frauds.

One of Obama’s bundlers, Abake Assongba, is currently under investigation for fraud.  Assongba is being accused of defrauding a businessman of $657,000 to go towards a Florida mansion by impersonating a bank official.  Oh, and she also decided not to pay $10,000 worth of rent on her old apartment in Brooklyn. But, despite all of these personal issues, she still managed to raise $50,000 for Obama 2012.  This news is the second scandal to come out of Obama’s bundlers list, after it was found last month that $200,000 worth of contributions came from the brothers of a Mexican fugitive charged with federal drug crimes, Carlos and Alberto Cardona.

Interestingly enough, Abake is the head of Abake’s Foundation, an organization that donates food and supplies to children in Benin.  Strange that such an altruist could not think of a different way to spend $50,000, in addition to the hundreds of thousands they gave to Democratic candidates previously.  But assuming the best here, lets say it really is her money, so she can do with it what she desires.

“Bundlers”, according to opensecrets.org, a site that details the actions of these particular persons, are defined as “people with friends in high places who, after bumping against personal contribution limits, turn to those friends, associates, and, well, anyone who’s willing to give, and deliver the checks to the candidate in one big ‘bundle.’” 

Clearly, these people go above and beyond regular donors to dedicate much time and effort to these candidates.  And sometimes these people are crooks.  Many observing this system would say that you should not attack a candidate for the actions of their donors, people they essentially do not and cannot control, and they would be right (unfortunately, many argue the opposite too).  So it really is not fair to blame Obama for having what may be dirty money on his hands, even if his staff did fail to fully search their contributors for possible criminal records.

But there is something useful thing that can come from tallying up the amount of crooks in each candidates list (more will be revealed, that is guaranteed).  These bad people, like the majority of regular, good Americans, choose to support a candidate because they feel this candidate will help him live the best life in this country for the next four years, out of all the options.  And for those with a lot of money, they often choose a candidate that they feel they may be able to influence.  But it is important to try to figure out why bad people in particular decide to put so much effort bundling up funds to donate to a specific candidate.  It is possible these criminals are seeing something in the candidates that we are missing.

With upwards of 120 million dollars from volunteered donations coming in for the Obama campaign, it is hard to believe that something the long the lines of “after my election I have more flexibility” was not whispered quite a few times from candidate to donors


–Rebecca Hecht