Martinez won, but broke the law

U.S. Sen. Mel Martinez has been fined $99,000 for violating campaign finance laws to help him win his 2004 election against Betty Castor. Martinez beat Castor 49.4 percent to 48.3 percent, a margin of about 75000 votes.

Martinez received more than $313,000 in excessive contributions from 186 contributors, according to the FEC.

After FEC auditors began investigating, Martinez’s campaign refunded about $95,000 in excessive contributions. It agreed to give another $11,500 in illegal contributions to the U.S. Treasury.

The campaign was allowed to keep another $218,000 in excessive contributions after they were properly redesignated to other legal campaign purposes.

If you win by breaking the law, shouldn’t you have to resign?