Kid Rock is being accused of violating federal law by touting his campaign for a seat in the U.S. Senate this summer and selling campaign merchandise, but without formally registering as a candidate and making certain public disclosures, according to a complaint filed on Friday by the group Common Cause.
"Regardless of whether Kid Rock says he's only exploring candidacy, he's selling ‘Kid Rock for Senate' merchandise and is a candidate under the law. This is campaign finance law 101," Paul S. Ryan, Common Cause's vice president for policy and litigation said in a statement. "Given the activities we've documented in the complaint, he can't reasonably claim to be merely testing the waters of candidacy and thus exempt from candidate filing requirements. He is a candidate and is obligated to abide by all the rules and make the same disclosures required of everyone else running for federal office."
Common Cause is urging the Justice Department and the Federal Election Commission to start an investigation into Kid Rock's campaign and "impose appropriate sanctions for any and all violations" that apply to the Federal Election Campaign Act.
The organization is also taking aim at Warner Bros. Records, Kid Rock's label, and argues the company acted as a "conduit" for people to contribute to the campaign.
After hearing of these reports, Kid Rock released a statement saying he has yet to officially announced his candidacy, and telling reporters to "go fuck" themselves for the "fake news."