News & Insights  |  Media Mentions

Michael Toner Comments on Mitt Romney's Campaign Spending

The Washington Post
March 5, 2012

Michael Toner, co-chair of the Election Law & Government Ethics Practice, was interviewed by The Washington Post for a story on GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney spending millions of dollars in consulting fees that have been billed to firms employing Mr. Romney's former staffers.

The Post reported that Republican political strategists said Mr. Romney's heavy use of outside consultants for fundraising is rare in a national political race. According to the Post, Mr. Romney paid a former aide's firm $4.6 million for fundraising consulting. In comparison, President Barack Obama spent $75,000 on the same expenditure.

The article added that President George Bush used a conventional approach by keeping most of his top aides in-house.

"That was the model that Bush followed, that [Robert J.] Dole followed," said Mr. Toner, former chairman of the Federal Election Commission and a campaign finance lawyer for the Bush team. "It was seen as cost-effective. You have really smart people working directly for the campaign who are 100 percent focused on the presidential race. Consulting costs can be minimized, and you have exclusive control."