FEC Approves Creation of Independent Expenditure Committees - State and Federal Communications

July 27, 2010  •  

FEC Approves Creation of Independent Expenditure Committees

The committees plan to use funds to make independent expenditures. Citing the recent Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission as well as a less-well known decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia issued this year called SpeechNow.org v. FEC, the FEC concluded corporations, labor organizations, and political committees may make unlimited independent expenditures from their own funds, and individuals may pool unlimited funds in an independent expenditure-only political committee.

In the case of the independent committee Commonsense Ten, a registered, non-connected political committee (Advisory Opinion 2010-11), the FEC concluded it could solicit and accept unlimited contributions from individuals, corporations, labor organizations, and political committees for the purpose of making independent expenditures.

In the case of Club for Growth, Inc., a 501(c)(4) corporation, (Advisory Opinion 2010-09),the FEC concluded on the same basis provided by Citizens United and SpeechNow.org it could establish and administer a committee to solicit and accept unlimited contributions from individuals in the general public, including contributions given for specific independent expenditures.

The FEC issued both advisory opinions on a vote of 5 to 1. Commissioner Steven T. Walther dissented in both opinions.

Continue Reading

State and Federal Communications, Inc. provides research and consulting services for government relations professionals on lobbying laws, procurement lobbying laws, political contribution laws in the United States and Canada. Learn more by visiting stateandfed.com

Sort by Month