Tags: Hillary Clinton | Hillary | campaign | headquarters | Brooklyn | FEC | complaint

Hillary Campaign's Lease in Brooklyn Called Into Question

Hillary Campaign's Lease in Brooklyn Called Into Question
(Joshua Roberts/Reuters/Landov)

By    |   Friday, 03 April 2015 11:40 AM

Even as accusations of violating election rules and an email-erasing scandal swirl around her, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is moving forward in her as-yet-unannounced 2016 run for the White House, leasing posh office space in Brooklyn for a campaign headquarters.

Politico reports that the Clinton campaign has signed a lease for two full floors at 1 Pierrepont Plaza in Brooklyn Heights, a pricey space advertised as "Modern Offices, Brooklyn Cool," and also housing the offices of Morgan Stanley and Loretta Lynch, President Barack Obama's nominee for attorney general.

The building's website calls it a "no-brainer in Brooklyn."

International Business Times, noting that the office is located in "one of New York City's wealthiest neighborhoods" with a median household income of $95,539, commented, "the signing could open Clinton's team to a Federal Elections Commission (FEC) complaint because she is not a declared candidate."

It already has. Clinton has been hit with a complaint filed with the FEC from the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT), which claims, "Hillary Clinton's activities have extended beyond merely testing the waters to determine whether a candidacy for President is feasible, and she should be deemed to be a candidate under the Act. Consequently, she is bound by the Act's contribution, registration and reporting requirements, which do not appear to have been met."

"The Commission must conduct an immediate and thorough investigation into these practices," the complaint states.

Matthew Whitaker, FACT's director, told the Free Beacon: "What the law says is once you do things that are only done by a campaign, for example, approving budgets, hiring staff and looking for a campaign office, that you've crossed the line — that you are no longer testing the waters.

"The FEC needs to do their job and needs to investigate and should conclude that voter lists put together by political action committees for the sole reason to turn over to a candidate is a violation of their rules. It's done solely to hide and not share with the public information that's relevant to her campaign and her candidacy," the Free Beacon reported.

Politico commented: "Signing a lease before Clinton was a declared candidate put the campaign at risk of someone filing a complaint against it with the FEC.

"Potential candidates can 'test the waters' indefinitely, but signing a lease under the name of a campaign could count as activity that would lead one to conclude that she had officially become a candidate."

However, Politico notes: "It's not clear what legal entity signed the lease on the Clinton campaign-in-waiting's behalf, however."

Clinton's new campaign digs have "some Clinton supporters" concerned that locating that close to Wall Street, "which is only two subway stops away," leaves Clinton vulnerable to opponents' charges of being too close to major investment firms and banks, CNN reported.

Meanwhile, Clinton reportedly has begun to hire staff, The New York Times reports, including Adam Parkhomenko as director of grass-roots engagement and Neisha Blandin as national finance associate. Hans Goff, Jessica Meija, Alex Smith and Rachel Schneider also are said to be on the hiring list.

Politico reports that six staffers already have been hired.

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Even as accusations of violating election rules and an email-erasing scandal swirl around her, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is moving forward in her as-yet-unannounced 2016 run for the White House, leasing posh office space in Brooklyn.
Hillary, campaign, headquarters, Brooklyn, FEC, complaint
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2015-40-03
Friday, 03 April 2015 11:40 AM
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