The gist of Bopp's argument will be that the loans were made to the candidate and not the committee, so therefore the source of the loans need not be reported. Bopp will claim that this is no different than a candidate taking a cash advance on his credit card. It will be interesting to see if Bopp actually references any statute within the Indiana Code to support his argument because, to date, I do not believe he has made such a reference.
As previously blogged (here and here), I believe the Kelty campaign violated IC 3-9-5-14:
IC 3-9-5-14. Committee’s treasurer reports.
(b) The report of each committee’s treasurer must disclose the following:
(3) The following information regarding each person who has made one (1) or more contributions within the year, in an aggregate amount that exceeds the threshold contribution amount in actual value to or for the committee, including the purchase of tickets for events such as dinners, luncheons, rallies, and similar fundraising events
Even Bopp admits that the loan was made for the purpose of the campaign. Thus it was made FOR the committee even if it wasn't made TO the committee and, as the statute indicates, any contribution made FOR the committee must be reported.
It will be interesting to see what questions the election board chooses to ask. I would like to know Bopp's answer to the following:
1. Bopp has argued that personal loans are held to a different standard than normal contributions. Following Bopp's argument couldn't any contribution be reclassified as a forgivable "loan" and thus not have to be reported?
2. Isn't a personal loan made specifically for the campaign quite distinct from a credit card cash advance that is not earmarked for the election and can be used at any time?
3. If a loan is made for the sole purpose of furthering a campaign then is that loan not considered to be made for the campaign committee?
4. Under what circumstances can a campaign contribution be made to a candidate and not have to be turned over to the campaign committee?
I will be covering the hearing tomorrow so drop me a line if you plan on being in attendance. Here's the info for those interested:
3:30 p.m. Tuesday
Allen County Building Department
1 W. Superior St.
1st floor meeting room