Rosie O’Donnell, who the New York Post calls Donald Trump’s “arch-nemesis,” reportedly broke the Federal Election Commission rules by donating too much money to politicians opposing Trump and his agenda. O’Donnell said that it was, “Nothing nefarious…I was not choosing to over donate….If 2,700 is the cut off – [candidates] should refund the money.”
According to the rules set forth by the FEC, the limit that individuals can donate to a candidate is $2,700 for each election. However, it’s possible to donate more than $2,700 per candidate if the donations are given separately for the primaries, runoffs, and general elections.
O’Donnell claimed that she mostly makes donations through ActBlue, often at night when she wants to “quell” her anxiety regarding the state of politics today. She believes that ActBlue should be monitoring donation limits, and should not allow anything over the FEC rule limit.
If O’Donnell didn’t know about the FEC rules, that might explain why she over-donated around $5,400 to five candidates. However, some point out that she used different New York addresses for each donation, and sometimes even different name variations.
Some of the recipients of superfluous donations include Alabama Sen. Doug Jones and Pennsylvania Rep. Conor Lamb. O’Donnell gave $4,700 to Jones, while she donated $3,600 to Lamb. Although Jones’ office did not respond to requests for comments, Lamb’s office said they plan to refund O’Donnell the extra $900. Also, they’ll give her the option of putting the $900 toward the primary elections, which would make it an allowable donation.
Other recipients of O’Donnell’s overzealous donations were California Rep. Adam Schiff, who received $2,950. Also on the list is Illinois congressional candidate Lauren Underwood, who received a donation of $4,200. Finally, the fifth candidate was Staten Island and Brooklyn congressional candidate Omar Vaid, who received $3,450. Vaid’s office said that some of the money was designated to the “wrong election” and the information would be fixed.
Even though O’Donnell broke the rules, it’s unlikely that she will deal with any serious penalties. As Lamb’s office noted, it’s possible to move donation funds around to different election stages in order to make it legitimate.
Perhaps this publicity will make O’Donnell more careful in the future. She’s known to give quite a bit of money to politicians. During the 2017-2018 election period, she gave over $90,000 in donations.