Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) can use campaign funds to make home improvements that would enhance her security, the Federal Election Commission ruled Thursday.
Her campaign had requested to use about $2,200 to improve her home’s exterior lighting and locks and install a duress alarm button.
The FEC concluded “that because the need for enhanced security at Representative Giffords’s home is due to violence and security threats stemming from her activities as a Member of Congress, the use of campaign funds to pay for such security measures does not constitute personal use of campaign funds.”
Giffords’ ongoing security concerns “would not exist were Representative Giffords not a Federal officeholder or a candidate for re-election,” the FEC ruled.
“Representative Giffords was shot and severely wounded while engaged in her duties as a Federal officeholder, and the expenses for the proposed upgrades to the security system at Representative Giffords’s family home would not exist irrespective of her duties as a Federal officeholder or as a candidate for re-election,” the wrote.