This Is The SEC Rule That's Making Some Wall Streeters Think Twice About Donating To Romney

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Photo: davelawrence8 | Flickr

Wall Streeters have been throwing their weight (read: money) behind Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign since Herman Cain was still touting 9-9-9.In fact, according to the centre for Responsive politics, Romney’s gotten $12 million from bankers and other financial professionals in this election. President Barack Obama, on the other hand, has collected $4.2 million — you get the picture.

Well now, says the Wall Street Journal, prospective (or repeat) Romney donors are running into a snag thanks to a little known SEC rule against ‘pay to play.’

See, The Romney Victory Fund is asking Wall Streeters to give the max donation of $75,800 to the campaign. Up to $40,000 of which is intended to go to campaign efforts in individual states — Idaho, Massachusetts, Oklahoma and Vermont. Each state can get up to $10,000.

Enter the SEC rule. Lawyers are warning their clients that if their banks are trying to win business in any of those four states, they could be violating rules meant to stop investors from influencing elections in states where they want to do deals.

The Romney camp is trying to find a way around it, but just to give you some context as to how serious this is — this is the rule that stopped Rick Perry from collecting donations from Wall Streeters because he was sitting governor of Texas during his presidential bid.

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