ProgressOhio filed a Federal Elections Commission complaint today against Romney For President and Murray Energy Corporation over the use of Ohio coal miners by Mitt Romney's campaign. The complaint contends that the miners' unpaid, mandatory attendance at an August 14th Romney campaign rally amounts to an illegal corporate contribution, particularly as footage of the miners is now being used for campaign ads. The complaint also asks for the FEC to investigate possible coercion on the part of the mining company.
A copy of the complaint is available online at: http://www.progressohio.org/Murray-Romney%20complaint.pdf
"It is clear from published reports by executives at Murray Energy that employees were mandated to attend the August 14 Romney rally after closing the mine," said Brian Rothenberg, Executive Director of ProgressOhio.
"Clearly the use of these miners in television ads is meant to convey something of value to the Romney campaign and is therefore a violation of federal law," Rothenberg said.
"It find it unethical and unconscionable that the Romney campaign, knowing that these mine workers were forced to attend the rally, chose to exploit them in television ads which portray them all as supporters," Rothenberg added. "Clearly the campaign should have thought better of exploiting the forced support of these workers."
Background information about the mandatory campaign event is available here: