Last week, the Atlas Shrug blog revealed that Barack Obama had received $24,321.41 in campaign contributions [well over the $2300 limit] from a fellow named, Monir Edwan. On Obama's official filings with the Federal Election Commission Edwan is listed as a resident of Rafah GA. Since no such town exists in the state of Georgia it was assumed that Mr. Edwan was most likely a resident of the Rafah refugee camp in the Gaza Strip.
It is illegal for a U.S. candidate to accept campaign contributions from foreigners. It is also also illegal for a US candidate to accept more than $2,300 per election cycle.
A WND investigation tracked down Monir Edwan and his brother Hosam who made donations totaling $5,200.13 to the Obama campaign, all in October of 2007.
From World Net Daily:
A WND investigation tracked down the Edwans, who are brothers living in the Tal Esaltan neighborhood of Rafah, a large refugee camp in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.
The Edwans are a large clan that include top Hamas supporters.
Speaking to WND, the two brothers praised Obama and admitted giving the money online to his campaign. They said they are not U.S. citizens but are citizens of "Palestine."
The Edwans denied they are affiliated with Hamas. Palestinian sources in Gaza confirmed the Edwans in question are secular, but could not say whether they supported Hamas.
Monir and Hasam Edwan denied their financial transactions online – listed as donations in U.S. government election filings – were actual donations to Obama's campaign. Instead they claimed they purchased about $30,000 in Obama T-shirts from the presidential candidate's online store – a contention that did not hold up during a WND interview, when they changed their story several times.
"My brother Hosam and I knew that Obama will be a big hit even before he became a candidate. We knew the guy would be a celebrity in Gaza so we decided to invest the amount of $29,000 to buy Obama T-shirts from his website and sell them in Gaza," Monir Edwan told WND, speaking by cell phone from Gaza.
"I know on the back of this story Obama rivals will present our business as a donation and they will try to use this story to let Obama fall, but I'm telling you, we bought T-shirts," Edwan maintained....
"We have nothing to do with the Obama campaign. We just like Obama and believe he will be the best for the Palestinians and for the world."
At first Monir Edwan claimed he sold the T-shirts in Gaza for around $9 and that a profit was made...
But it was pointed out to Edwan the T-shirts for sale on Obama's website are listed as $20.08 and that selling the merchandise for less would not yield a profit.
"Maybe we sold the shirts for a lot more. I can't remember now," said Edwan.
Asked why he would purchase T-shirts at such a high rate and pay the cost of shipping when he could pay a company to produce T-shirts for less, Edwan replied, "We wanted the shirts to come from the campaign."
But Edwan could not explain how he managed to get shipments of T-shirts into the Gaza Strip during the months he claimed to have purchased the merchandise, since Israel imposed a tight closure of the Gaza Strip starting in June 2007 that lasted until June 2008, when the Israeli government agreed to a cease-fire with Hamas in Gaza.
"We don't want to cause any damage to Obama's campaign," was Edwan's reply. Edwan said he wants Obama to be president.
"Not just the people in Gaza but people from all over the world are rooting for this great man," he told WND.
FEC spokesman Biersack told WND contributions from overseas are allowed if the donations are coming from U.S. citizens or green card carriers. But he said accepting money from foreigners would violate election provisions.
He said there are strict guidelines against accepting more than $2,300 from one individual during a single election.
"I am not familiar with the particulars of the case, so I am commenting in general. The FEC will have to examine all the circumstances before determining any wrongdoing," Biersack clarified.
Read in full.