DNC Chairman Howard Dean said his committee filed a complaint against McCain with the Federal Election Commission saying his Feb. 6 request to withdraw from the presidential public financing system was a violation of the 2002 Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act, or the McCain-Feingold amendment, The Hill reported Monday.
McCain signed up for federal matching funds in 2007, agreeing to adhere to an overall spending limit of $54 million for the primary season lasting until the party's nominating convention.
McCain's campaign has already spent $49 million, federal reports show. Knowingly violating the spending limit is a criminal offense punishable by fines and imprisonment.
"This is a classic example of someone who talks one way and does another when it benefits him," Dean said.
Brian Rogers, a McCain spokesman, countered Dean's comments, saying, "Howard Dean's hypocrisy is breathtaking given that in 2003 he withdrew from the matching funds system in exactly the same way that John McCain is doing today."