'Ugly Betty' to Help Clinton Pay Campaign Bills

America Ferrera has agreed to help Hillary Clinton with campaign debt.

ByABC News
December 4, 2008, 6:57 AM

Dec. 4, 2008 -- The star of ABC's "Ugly Betty" has agreed to help Hillary Clinton retire her campaign debt before a federal law prevents Barack Obama's choice for Secretary of State from being personally involved in raising funds.

Clinton's presidential campaign committee sent an e-mail to supporters on Thursday, inviting them to participate in a conversation with the former first lady in New York City on Monday, Dec. 15, which will feature special guest Bill Clinton and will be hosted by America Ferrera, the "Ugly Betty" star who first announced her support for Clinton in January 2008 and campaigned for her in Nevada and Pennsylvania.

The purpose of the event, which is scheduled to take place at Manhattan Center Studios, is to help the former first lady retire her sizable campaign debt.

Clinton had nearly $7.5 million in debts to consultants and vendors at the end of October, according to her campaign's latest Federal Election Commission report.

Clinton is hoping to retire her IOUs as quickly as possible because the Hatch Act prohibits Cabinet members from soliciting campaign funds, including contributions to pay bills from previous political campaigns, according to a 2001 advisory opinion from the Office of Special Counsel.

Clinton can personally participate in raising money until she is confirmed by the Senate and takes office as Secretary of State. Once confirmed, she cannot be personally involved in helping her committee raise money while serving in the Cabinet.

Campaign committees must continue to exist until their debts are settled.