Campaign Finance Reform

News & Analysis as of

Looking Back at Five Years of Citizens United

This month marked the fifth anniversary of the Supreme Court handing down its decision in Citizens United v. FEC. More than perhaps most other recent Supreme Court decisions, Citizens United has remained in the public...more

"Significant Changes to Oklahoma's Campaign Finance, Lobbying and Gift Laws"

Significant changes to Oklahoma's campaign finance, lobbying and gift laws and rules recently went into effect. Below, please find a summary of these changes....more

"Changes Likely in Campaign Finance, Pay-to-Play"

In recent months, aggregate political contribution limits have been the subject of dramatic change due to the McCutcheon decision as well as significant legislative modifications in the federal budget bill. Meanwhile,...more

FPPC Has Record Year for Enforcement Actions

Is compliance with state ethics laws, the Political Reform Act and Government Code section 1090, declining? Or, is the FPPC getting better at ferreting out violations and violators? These questions arise in the wake of the...more

National Party Committees to Benefit from New and Vastly Increased Contribution Limits

In signing the omnibus appropriations bill into law on December 16, 2014, the President created new vehicles for making increased contributions to national political party committees. The Federal Election Commission, which is...more

Will 2015 be The Year for Pay-to-Play Reform in New Jersey?

New Jersey’s pay-to-play laws have been described as a “dizzyingly complex array of statutes, ordinances and executive orders.” New Jersey currently has different laws in effect that apply to State government contracts, State...more

New Limits Expand Funding Pool For National Party Committees

Recently passed spending legislation dramatically increased the amount that individual donors may give to the National Party Committee accounts used to fund party conventions, construction and legal challenges. Specifically,...more

National Political Parties Get a Christmas Bonus: Major Campaign Finance Provisions in Must-Pass Legislation

Congressional appropriators released the details of the FY15 funding bill (the “Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act,” or “Cromnibus”) on December 9, 2014, funding the federal government at $1.013 trillion...more

"Increased Scrutiny for Government Contracts Under New Maryland Pay-to-Play Law"

Amendments to Maryland's pay-to-play law taking effect January 1, 2015, will impose burdensome contract reporting requirements for many companies. Although Maryland has had a pay-to-play law on the books for years, these...more

"Arkansas Bans Corporate Contributions to Candidates and Prohibits Gifts From Lobbyists"

On November 4, 2014, Arkansas voters passed a constitutional amendment extending term limits for state legislators and tightening ethics laws. The amendment prohibits candidates from accepting corporate contributions,...more

"Post-Election Issues (Inaugurations, Transitions and Special Elections)"

Now that the 2014 mid-term elections are over, we must contend with special legal issues that arise from contributions to federal, state, or local inaugural or transition committees, paying for inaugural events and...more

Only in New York, New York

Conventional wisdom holds that campaign finance reform is elusive. At both the federal level and in many states, the pace of enactment tends to be measured in decades....more

Permanent Injunction of Pennsylvania’s Prohibition against Establishment of Political Committees to Receive Contributions of...

On August 13, 2014, an order was issued by the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania in the matter of General Majority PAC v. Carol Aichele permanently enjoining implementation and enforcement of...more

"Massachusetts Revises Campaign Finance Law"

On August 1, 2014, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick signed House Bill No. 4366 amending the state's campaign finance laws. The amendments, among other things, increase the contribution limit for individual contributors to...more

Weekly Update from the NC State House - July 2014: Sightings of the Governor, Speaker, and President Pro-Tem throughout the week...

Rep. Fulghum - The House Thursday honored the life of Rep. Jim Fulghum, who passed away Saturday evening after a brief battle with cancer, with House Resolution 1277. North Carolina lost a true public servant and we...more

A Legislative Scorecard for the New York City Campaign Finance Board

The World Cup is over. Quadrennial hopes and dreams next turn to the post-election report (PER) the NYC Campaign Finance Board (CFB) must submit to the Mayor and City Council on or before September 1, as it has every four...more

"Developments Regarding Aggregate Contribution Limits"

In the aftermath of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in McCutcheon v. FEC, striking down the aggregate limits imposed on individual contributions under federal law, several jurisdictions also have taken steps to address...more

The Law of Unintended Consequences?

Shortly after the indictment of Rod Blagojevich, Illinois legislators passed a number of campaign finance reform measures, including contribution limits for the first time in the state’s history and limits on independent...more

"New York Public Corruption Reform Updates"

Numerous endeavors have been undertaken recently to investigate and combat political corruption in New York that could result in more enforcement of political corruption laws in the state. Specifically, this mailing discusses...more

Contributions by New Jersey Government Contractors Increased Dramatically in 2013: Will Pay-to-Play Reform Follow?

Late last month, ELEC issued its 2013 Annual Report, which includes an analysis of the Pay-to-Play Annual Disclosures (Form BE) filed by New Jersey government contractors. Although New Jersey has stringent pay-to-play...more

From Second and State: PA Political Update

March 31marked the end of the campaign finance reporting cycle covering the period from January 1 through March 31. According to reports filed with the Department of State, gubernatorial candidates have the following cash on...more

"Recent Developments in Aggregate State Contribution Limits After Supreme Court’s Decision in McCutcheon v. FEC"

On April 2, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in McCutcheon v. FEC, striking down the aggregate limits imposed on individual contributions under federal law. Although this decision cannot necessarily be read to...more

Public Trust Act – A Public Financing Trial and Tribulation

The NY State Legislature and Governor Cuomo enacted a new State budget on April 1, and with it, enabling legislation that includes changes in NY’s campaign finance law. In addition to new independent expenditure disclosure...more

Supreme Court’s Campaign Contribution Decision To Have Substantial Impact

Pundits have alternatively saluted and denounced the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week striking down aggregate campaign contribution limits as unconstitutional. Few, however, have addressed the decision’s impact on...more

Supreme Court Opens New Political Contribution Opportunities for Big Donors

In a divided 5-4 ruling in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court today struck down the federal election law’s long-standing “biennial limit” – the aggregate amount that a person can give to federal...more

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