A campaign finance watchdog group has filed a complaint against U.S. Senate candidate Matt Rosendale of Montana and the National Rifle Association's lobbying arm.
The Washington, D.C.-based Campaign Legal Center alleges in the Federal Election Commission complaint filed Monday that the Montana Republican and the gun-rights group illegally coordinated an NRA ad buy this month.
The allegation was made Friday after The Daily Beast posted an audio recording of Rosendale saying he expected the NRA to support him in his campaign against Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester.
“It’s a big nothingburger,” Rosendale said.
Speaking to Community News Service Saturday in Whitehall, Rosendale says he hasn’t even listened to the audio.
“All that audiotape proves is that I was looking forward to having the endorsement from the NRA, which I have since received. I’m very proud of that endorsement,” Rosendale said.
Outside organizations can spend unlimited amounts to influence elections if they operate independently of candidates, but it's illegal to coordinate spending or communications with the candidate.