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Al Sharpton’s Failed 2004 Presidential Campaign Still Owes Almost $1 Million In Debts

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Rev. Al Sharpton has some explaining to do after a report showed that his failed 2004 presidential campaign still owes close to a million dollars. 17 years after Sharpton lost in the primary he still owes that much cash?

According to Federal Election Commission records, Sharpton’s campaign owed $567,096.28 but that number grew to close to a million after reaching a settlement agreement with Sharpton, his campaign committee, its treasurer, and the Sharpton controlled National Action Network.

Sharpton told the New York Post in 2020: “I have asked Andrew Rivera, the finance chair of my 2004 campaign, to set up a meeting with the Federal Election Commission so that I can resolve any campaign debts related to Sharpton 2004. I am willing to work out a settlement for all claims with my own money to the degree that I’m allowed and will raise money directly. Even if I am not legally liable for it, I am certainly morally responsible.”

“It does reflect poorly on the people at the helm. I have worked for candidates who I know have taken great pains to make sure staff and consultants are taken care of,” Jerri Ann Henry, said earlier. “Frankly, almost a million dollars, that’s a lot of money. Today’s campaigns spend at that level all the time, but that is very significant coming all the way back in 2004.”

According to Fox Business: “A quarterly report filed by the campaign committee on Monday revealed that it has yet to pay the $208,000 penalty, the $181,115 reimbursement, or other debts, such as $145,146.60 to Kinko’s for fundraising letter preparation. In total, the FEC says the campaign committee owes $925,713.78

The FEC issued a press release when they settled the issue with Sharpton that said:

“The Federal Election Commission announced today that it reached settlement agreements, totaling $285,000 in civil penalties, with Rev. Alfred C. Sharpton; Sharpton 2004 and the committee’s treasurer, Andrew Rivera; and National Action Network, Inc, a non-profit organization Sharpton founded and of which he has served as President since inception.

“During his 2004 presidential campaign, Sharpton traveled extensively and routinely mixed travel for his campaign committee and National Action Network. An FEC audit and investigation revealed that National Action Network and other entities paid $387,192 in campaign expenses.

“The FEC determined that National Action Network made payments totaling $107,615 for committee expenses and $73,500 in payments to consultants and vendors for campaign-related work, violating the prohibition against corporate contributions. Sharpton’s sole proprietorships, Rev-Als Production and Sharpton Media LLC, also paid $214,577 in campaign travel expenses and an additional $65,000 came from unknown sources.

“None of these in-kind contributions were disclosed in the committee’s disclosure reports.

“Sharpton, his presidential campaign committee, Sharpton 2004, and Andrew Rivera, in his official capacity as treasurer, agreed to pay a civil penalty of $208,000 for failing to report accurately all receipts and expenditures, receiving excessive and prohibited in-kind contributions and accepting impermissible corporate contributions.

“They also agreed to refund $10,500 in unresolved excessive contributions, disgorge $9,000 in excessive contributions and refund $181,115 to National Action Network or disgorge the funds to the U.S. Treasury. National Action Network, Inc. and Sharpton, as president, agreed to a civil penalty of $77,000 for making prohibited contributions to Sharpton 2004.

“Respondents also agreed that they misstated receipts and disbursements and cash on hand, understated by $231,753; receipts of $15,000 in loans from unknown sources; and $10,500 in excessive contributions from individuals.

“Under the law, the FEC must attempt to resolve its enforcement cases, or MURs, through a confidential investigative process that may lead to a negotiated conciliation agreement between the Commission and the individual or group,” the FEC said.