October 5, 2012 •
FEC Will Defend Electioneering Regulation in Court
The Federal Election Commission (FEC) will not be creating any new regulations to address contribution disclosure requirements connected to electioneering communications, at least on its own accord.
Yesterday, the Commission was unable to achieve the requisite four votes needed to initiate rulingmaking in response to a federal court order. In Center for Individual Freedom v. Van Hollen, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ordered the FEC, under the jurisdiction of the District Court, to decide whether the Commission would pursue rulemaking addressing the issues raised concerning 11 C.F.R. §104.20(c)(9) or defend its current regulation in court.
Currently, 11 C.F.R. §104.20(c)(9) requires disclosure only of those making contributions over $1,000 to an entity explicitly for the purpose of furthering electioneering communications. The lawsuit argues the current rule contradicts the statute requiring disclosure of all donors making contributions over $1,000.
The FEC counsel has filed a status report advising the District Court that the Commission “does not intend to pursue a rulemaking and that it will continue to defend 11 C.F.R. § 104.20(c)(9) before the Court.”