A mysterious company has given $1 million to an independent political committee supporting Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign and then dissolved, raising concerns that the company’s only real business was exploiting the new law that allows corporations to make unlimited donations to political campaigns.
The company, called W Spann, incorporated in Delaware on March 15, gave $1 million to the pro-Romney PAC, Restore Our Future, on April 28, then went out of business on July 11, according to records with the Federal Election Commission (FEC). There are no records of any business activities that occurred during the company’s four-month existence, nor is there any trace of shareholders or executives, according to MSNBC.
W Spann listed its address as 590 Madison Ave. in New York, but the building has no record of a tenant by that name, MSNBC reports. The swanky skyscraper does house Bain Capital — the investment firm founded by Romney.
W Spann’s name popped up in the first donor report filed by Restore Our Future this year, which came out last week. The report discloses that organization had received a total of $12.2 million by June. Besides W Spann, three other donors made $1 million contributions: hedge-fund manager John Paulson and two corporate partnerships listed at the Provo, Utah, address of Steven J. Lund, a former chief executive of Nu Skin Enterprises.
Restore Our Future’s organizers refused to provide the media with more information about W Spann. “Restore Our Future has fully complied with all FEC regulations, including publicly disclosing donors on our July 31 report,” spokeswoman Brittany Gross told the Washington Post.
Watchdog groups say foul play is possible. "Once the opportunity exists for flying under the radar, of course that loophole will be used," Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics, told the Associated Press.
The Public Campaign Action Fund, which backs public financing of elections, has requested that Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden — the vice president’s son — launch an investigation into W Spann.