The Obama re-election campaign has accepted at least one foreign donation in violation of the law — and does nothing to check on the provenance of millions of dollars in other contributions, a watchdog group alleges.
Chris Walker, a British citizen who lives outside London, told The Post he was able to make two $5 donations to President Obama’s campaign this month through its Web site while a similar attempt to give Mitt Romney cash was rejected. It is illegal to knowingly solicit or accept money from foreign citizens.
Walker said he used his actual street address in England but entered Arkansas as his state with the Schenectady, NY, ZIP code of 12345.
“When I did Romney’s, the payment got rejected on the grounds that the address on the card did not match the address that I entered,” he said. “Romney’s Web site wanted the code from the back of card. Barack Obama’s didn’t.”
In September, Obama’s campaign took in more than $2 million from donors who provided no ZIP code or incomplete ZIP codes, according to data posted on the Federal Election Commission Web site.
The Obama campaign said the FEC data was the result of “a minor technical error.”
“All the ZIP codes and numbers are real and can be verified,” spokesman Michael Czin said.
The Obama campaign’s apparent lack of safeguards makes it possible to violate the law, says a report released by the Government Accountability Institute, a Florida-based watchdog group.
The report found that one Obama site — Obama.com — gets almost half of its traffic from foreign computer addresses. The site directs users to an Obama donation page.
“We are not suggesting that just foreign traffic by itself is a problem,” said Peter Schweizer, president of the GAI. “But for a campaign that is very sophisticated in its fund-raising capabilities, they do not make one effort to try to even see or ask somebody to check a box that says they are a US citizen.”
Obama’s re-election campaign took in $130,867 from donors who provided no ZIP codes and $2 million from those with incomplete ZIPs in September.
That same month, Romney’s campaign recorded $2,450 from donors without ZIP codes and $2,500 from those with incomplete ZIPs.
Read more at nypost.com