New DNC chairwoman shuns PAC money for personal account

The incoming chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) will stop taking money from political action committees for her personal campaign account, her spokesman said Thursday.

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the Florida congresswoman tapped by President Obama to next lead the DNC, swore off PAC money in order to be consistent with DNC rules against PAC contributions.

The Sunlight Foundation first reported that Wasserman Schultz's last fundraiser from which she'll accept PAC money was Monday, coinciding with the end of this month.

It's not clear what the shift means for Wasserman Schultz's own PAC, the "Democrats Win Seats" (after her initials, "DWS") PAC, which itself relies largely on contributions from other PACs in order to help Democratic campaigns. The DWS PAC took in more than $66,000 in donations last month alone, according to its Federal Election Commission (FEC) filing, most of which came from PACs.

The DNC issued a rule barring donations from PACs shortly after Obama won the presidential nomination in 2008, a move praised by watchdogs as a step toward transparency and diminishing lobbyist influence.

The pivot by Wasserman Schultz also underscores the dual functions she'll serve for the next year and a half or so, both as a congresswoman who'll have to fight and win her own reelection battle (though she represents a relatively safe district), while serving in a higher-profile capacity as leader of the DNC.

Updated 2:19 p.m.