Issue One Executive Director Meredith McGehee warned that Texas lawyer Trey Trainor is the wrong choice to serve as a commissioner on the Federal Election Commission ahead of the Senate’s expected vote today on his nomination:
“Trey Trainor is the wrong choice to serve on the Federal Election Commission. Reopening the FEC with a commissioner who does not think we should enforce the nation’s campaign finance laws will only make matters worse. All senators, regardless of their political party, should have serious doubts about Trey Trainor’s ability to be the campaign finance watchdog the American people need, and senators from both parties should oppose his nomination.
“Amid the 2020 presidential election and the coronavirus pandemic, it is absolutely imperative that the American people have faith in the integrity of our elected officials and that our nation has a functional watchdog to enforce federal anti-corruption laws. Trey Trainor has demonstrated that he does not support commonsense enforcement of our election laws. President Trump should only nominate, and the Senate should only confirm, individuals who will prioritize enforcing both the letter and the spirit of law.”
The six-member FEC currently has just three sitting commissioners. And while a term on the FEC is designed to be six years, the most junior FEC commissioner has been serving for nearly 12 years (roughly double a normal term) and the longest-serving FEC commissioner has been serving for more than 17 years (roughly three times a normal term).
Without a quorum of at least four commissioners, the FEC’s enforcement backlog has grown to more than 300 cases — including about three dozen that involve alleged illegal foreign interference in U.S. elections.
Through the FEC M.I.A. project, Issue One continues to spotlight how the FEC has been effectively shut down since September 1, 2019, following the resignation of one commissioner in August.
Issue One also previously highlighted five exchanges from Trainor’s confirmation hearing in March that illustrated how out of touch he is with the FEC and the major campaign finance issues facing the country.