Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton both made the decision to refuse donations from certain political action committees (PACs) on the same day.
"I am self-funding my campaign and therefore I will not be controlled by the donors, special interests and lobbyists who have corrupted our politics and politicians for far too long," Trump said in a statement obtained by Newsweek on Oct. 23. "I have disavowed all super PAC's, requested the return of all donations made to said PAC's, and I am calling on all presidential candidates to do the same."
Trump asked the nine super PACs that appear to support his presidential bid to stop raising money using his name, likeness, and slogans, and to return any donations they have collected, The Washington Post reports.
"We are providing this written notice that your organization is not authorized to use Mr. Trump's name and likeness in connection with its fundraising activities, and we are formally disavowing such activities," the letters sent to the PACs read. "Thus, given the invocation of Donald J. Trump in connection with your activities, we ask that you refund all funds received by you in connection with any fundraising undertaken to specifically support and/or done in the name of Donald J. Trump ... The campaign has never received money from your PAC, nor does the campaign want any money, services or goods from your committee."
Also on Oct. 23, Clinton’s campaign staff confirmed to Fusion that she would no longer be accepting contributions from federally registered lobbyists and PACs for private prison companies.
Any previous donations received from such PACs will be donated by the Clinton campaign to charity.
“It’s an encouraging step forward,” Rashad Robinson, executive director of the online civil rights group ColorOfChange, said.
Clinton’s decision reportedly came after civil rights and immigration rights groups, including Black Lives Matter, Get Equal, Presente, and United We Dream, put pressure on her to refuse the PACs donations.
"Hillary Clinton has said we must end the era of mass incarceration, and as president, she will end private prisons and private immigrant detention centers," a representative from her campaign told Newsweek. "When we're dealing with a mass incarceration crisis, we don't need private industry incentives that may contribute—or have the appearance of contributing—to over-incarceration."