SBD/July 3, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

GOP Files Complaint Against Democratic Candidate's NASCAR Ride Sponsorship

The Republican Party of Florida on Wednesday filed a complaint with the Florida Elections Commission against Democratic gubernatorial contender Charlie Crist, accusing him of "violating campaign-finance laws" by sponsoring a car in Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400, according to Skyler Swisher of the Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL. Driver Josh Wise’s No. 98 car is "sponsored by Crist’s campaign, and the car will be covered with ads for the Republican-turned-Democrat." The complaint states that a one-race sponsorship of the car "costs about $55,000 to $60,000, well above the state’s $3,000 limit for a contribution to a statewide candidate." The car is owned by former California Lieutenant Gov. Mike Curb (Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL, 7/3). 270 Strategies contractor Brendan Gilfillan, who reps Crist's campaign, said that the GOP "got its facts wrong," noting that the sponsorship was "an in-kind contribution to Crist's political committee, Charlie Crist for Florida, which is not subject to the $3,000 limit." Gilfillan: "We appreciate them drawing more attention to the car, though" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 7/3).
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