4What are the issues? How much can candidates raise? How much can various donors contribute?What is the relationship between independent political speakers and candidate campaigns?How much do candidates get from the government to campaign, and how do they qualify?
7Costs of campaigning have risen sharply Source: Center for Responsive Politics /OpenSecrets.Org
82006 High and low spenders House Senate Average winner spent $1,253,031$9,635,370Average loser spent$622,348$7,406,678Most expensive campaign$8,112,752$40,828,991Most expensive campaignerVernon Buchanan (R-FL)Hillary Clinton (D-NY)Least expensive winning campaign$182,375$1,529,370Least expensive winning campaignerWayne T. Gilchrest (R-MD)Craig Thomas (R-WY)Most receipts from PACs$2,437,580$5,433,898Candidate with most PAC receiptsDeborah Pryce (R-OH)James M. Talent (R-MO)Source: Center for Responsive Politics/OpenSecrets.Org
9The effect of money The biggest spenders don’t necessarily win Billionaires that have spent huge sums have often failed to gain much supportMost officials are at least fairly well to do and few are poor
10Who raises what? Federal candidate comm State candidate comm Only federal moneyState candidate commOnly state moneyNational PartiesState/Local partiesFederalLevinStatePACs527sNeither fed nor state money
12Special Rules for Candidates Only federal fundsSame restrictions on fundraisingRestrictions on spendingMillionaire’s Amendment
13History of money in politics Money has been involved in politics as long as the United States has existedPolitics was tied to patronage throughout the 1800sTo get a government job you were expected to contribute to a candidate’s campaign fundsBacking the right horse was important
14Earliest politicsDuring the early development of federal politics, coalitions formed around favored individuals, and around policies. No permanent parties of the sort we are used to existed. Campaigns consisted of supporters publishing tracts in favor of a candidate, holding political gatherings that supported him (and often providing liquor in the process).
15Popular sovereigntyAs responsibility for nomination of presidential candidates gradually moved from congressional caucuses for the developing parties to popular vote, it became necessary to communicate with the wider public. That demanded money.
16How to get the money?“The first targets in the quest for campaign funds were federal government employees, who were assessed a percentage of their salaries as a condition of continued employment.”Center for Public IntegrityAndrew Jackson developed the system, ‘reforming’ the civil service system by rewarding supporters with jobs. Bills in Congress to put an end to this system were regularly defeated.
17Attempts at reform1867—solicitation of funds from workers at Navy yards outlawed, and workers protected from being fired if they refused to give1877—President Rutherford B. Hayes ordered all government officials to stay out of political activities beyond expressing their views on issues and voting1883—Pendleton Act provided for selection of some federal employees through competitive examinations and shielded them from political assessments
19Result?Political parties, now much more the professionalized organizations we know today, turned to wealthy donors for moneyBegins in earnest with Ulysses S. Grant1896 Mark Hanna tapped corporate wealth for William McKinley ($3 million)
20More reform attempts1901 Republican Senator William E. Chandler introduced a bill to bar federally chartered corporations from contributing to elections at any levelUnsuccessful“Pitchfork Bill” Tillman induced to follow up1907 “Tillman Act” barred corporate contributions to campaignsTeddy Roosevelt, criticized for his money collection, called for legislation to combat bribery, public disclosure of contributions and public financing of campaigns—but he was unsuccessful
21New levels of money and Supreme Court action Henry Ford lost his bid for U.S. Senate from Michigan to Truman H. Newberry (R) who had spent ten times the federally mandated limit.$180,000Newberry’s case led to a SCOTUS decision that Congress had overreached its powers regarding primaries
22New Scandals Teapot Dome One of the oilmen implicated in the scandal had made significant contributions to Republican Party to pay off their 1920 debt. Because they were made after the election, they did not need to be disclosed.1925 Federal Corrupt Practices ActAs much loophole as lawSpending limits applied only to party committees, leading to the development of candidate campaign committees, political action committees (PACs)
23Subsequent actions Roosevelt New Deal Republicans saw this as a massive patronage systemAlben W. Barkley of KentuckySaid to have financed his campaign through the solicitation of thousands of relief workers1939 Clean Politics Act (“Hatch Act”)—barred the solicitation of campaign money from all federal employees and specifically from workers on public works payrollsLater amended to limit individual donations to federal candidates ($5,000) or national party committee and limit to $3 million what any party committee operating in two or more states could receive or spend
24Limiting the UnionsWar Labor Disputes Act of 1943—prohibited labor unions from contributing until six months after war’s endLabor Management Relations Act (“Taft-Hartley”) of 1946 made ban on union-treasury money permanentSpurred the growth of PACsUnions formed committees to collect voluntary contributions from workers that paid for a wide range of political activity (voter education, GOTV, registration, etc.)
251943 CIO establishes CIO-PAC Raises more than $1.4 millionAfter AFL merger, AFL-CIO Committee on Political EducationBy 1956, 17 labor PACs contributing $2.1 million in federal electionslabor PACs contribute $7.1 millionBusiness got started lateAMPAC (American Medical Association)BIPAC (Business-Industry)
26The need for money explodes The 1968 presidential election vastly increased the cost of presidential campaignsSelling of the PresidentSenatorial campaigns would gradually follow suitThen HouseDemand for money for television commercials drove the need for donations1970—Congress passes legislation limiting total spending on broadcast ads and requiring broadcasters to give lowest rates to candidates—Nixon vetoes
271972 Federal Election Campaign Act At the end of Nixon’s first term, the Federal Election Campaign Act was passed by CongressNixon reluctantly signedWatergate1974 Federal Election Campaign Act Amendments
28The law was pretty much immediately challenged in the courts FECA with amendments was the most sweeping campaign finance reform in historyBut before the ink was dry, campaign managers were looking for loopholesThe law was pretty much immediately challenged in the courtsEventually, Buckley v. Valeo, decided by the Supreme Court, would limit FECA considerably
29Campaign Finance Reform and Buckley II Original ProvisionEffect of Buckley v. ValeoContribution limitsIndividual limits: $1k/candidate/electionAffirmedPAC limits: $5k/candidate/electionParty committee limits: $5k/candidate/electionCap on total contributions individual can make to all candidates ($25k)Struck down (freedom of speech)Cap on spending “on behalf of candidates” by parties
30Campaign Finance Reform and Buckley I Original ProvisionEffect of Buckley v. ValeoExpenditure limitsOverall spending limits (Congress and president)Struck down partially (freedom of speech)Limits on the use of candidates’ own resourcesStruck down entirely (freedom of speech)Limits on media expendituresIndependent expenditure limits
31Subsequent changesCongress amended FECA to try to deal with Buckley v. Valeo1976 Changes in limits (higher for PACs than individuals)Led to explosion of PACs and PAC money1979 reduction in paperwork burden
32What is public funding?Public funding of Presidential elections means that qualified Presidential candidates receive federal government funds to pay for the valid expenses of their political campaigns in both the primary and general elections. National political parties also receive federal money for their national nominating conventions.FEC
33Primary matching funds Partial public funding is available to Presidential primary candidates in the form of matching payments. The federal government will match up to $250 of an individual's total contributions to an eligible candidate.
34Candidates must qualify Only candidates seeking nomination by a political party to the office of President are eligible to receive primary matching funds.He or she must raise in excess of $5,000 in each of at least 20 states (i.e., over $100,000).a maximum of $250 per individual applies toward the $5,000 threshold in each state.
35Candidates also must agree to: Limit campaign spending for all primary elections to $10 million plus a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).Limit campaign spending in each state to $200,000 plus COLA, or to a specified amount based on the number of voting age individuals in the state (plus COLA), whichever is greater.Limit spending from personal funds to $50,000.
36Impact:More candidates can enter the primary election with a meaningful presenceBut: the limits are low enough that many major candidates opt out of the public finance system in the primaries
37Public financingMajor parties receive money for their nominating conventionsProbably the most controversial of all public financingStill, the great majority of convention money comes from PACs, lobbyistsGeneral election funds come in lump sum (all candidate is allowed to spend) if acceptedHowever, money flows to non-candidate committees and is used in ways that support candidacy
38Federal Election Commission PurposeIn 1975, Congress created the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to administer and enforce the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA)the statute that governs the financing of federal elections.The duties of the FEC, which is an independent regulatory agency, are todisclose campaign finance informationenforce the provisions of the law such as the limits and prohibitions on contributions,oversee the public funding of Presidential elections.
39Congress applied ruling to parties 1978 FEC rules that FECA allowed for money to be used in grassroots organizing, voter registration, GOTV, without regard to limitations on contributionsPAC growth1974—1,146 PACs1986—4,157 PACsCongress applied ruling to partiesContributions for these activities came to be known as “soft money”
40How was it exploited?Candidate campaign raises money for party committee, then party committee spends it on activities that support the candidate
41Soft money growth ($ in millions) Source: Center for Public Integrity
45Independent expenditures Individuals or organizations could make independent expenditures as long as they were independent of a candidate or official campaign committee.NRAMoveOn.OrgWillie HortonSwift Boat Veterans
46Issue advocacyCommittees paid for ads professing to push or oppose issues associated with a candidate without expressly calling for people to vote for or against that candidateSource: Center for Public IntegritySCOTUS’ “magic words”Vote for XXXXVote against XXXX
47Public finance By the 1990s, public finance money drying up Too many candidates getting too much moneyIncrease in check-off to $3, but fewer checking offDecline in public support for parties
49Still more reform Clinton/Gore fundraising scandals McCain-Feingold Very controversialFirst AmendmentBias toward major partiesOpposed by diverse coalitionMitch McConnell
50Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (McCain-Feingold 2002) Meant to close loopholes that allowed soft money to flow into campaign committees and to control advertising said to be aimed at issues but actually performing as campaign promotion
51BCRAEliminated all soft money contributions to national party committeesIncreased individual limit from $1,000 to $2,000 with index for inflation ($2,300 in 2008)Banned the use of certain political communications by corporate, union or incorporated non-profit committees within 30 days of primary or convention, or 60 days of general (political communications)Millionaire’s amendment“Stand by your ad” (“I’m Bruce Lunsford and I endorsed this message”)
52Challenged in McConnell v FEC SCOTUS allowed the great majority of BCRA to stand
53527s and 501sGroups that are not tied to campaigns but engage in political speechUnited States tax code, 26 U.S.C. § 527527s were the target of McCain-FeingoldShort decline, but SCOTUS decision may lead to resurgenceA 527 group is created primarily to influence the nomination, election, appointment or defeat of candidates for public office. The term is generally used to refer to political organizations that are not regulated by the Federal Election Commission or by a state elections commission, and are not subject to the same contribution limits as PACs.In 2004, the FEC decided that the law did not cover these independent 527 organizations unless they directly advocated the election or defeat of a candidate.
54In 2006 and 2007 the FEC fined a number of organizations, including MoveOn and Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, for violations arising from the 2004 campaign. The FEC's rationale was that these groups had specifically advocated the election or defeat of candidates, thus making them subject to federal regulation and its limits on contributions to the organizations.
55In 2004, a total of $439,709,105 was spent by these organizations alone, $307,324,096 of which was spent by Democratic/liberal groups and $132,385,009 of which was spent by Republican/conservative groups.
56501(c)(3) Charitable Organizations All 501(c)(3) organizations are permitted to educate individuals about issues, or fund research that supports their political position without overtly advocating for a position on a specific bill. They are not supposed to directly promote a candidate or engage in electoral activities. However, recent actions that come close have been accepted by the SCOTUS.
57A major portion of BCRA was diluted in FEC v A major portion of BCRA was diluted in FEC v. Wisconsin Right To Life (2007) when the SCOTUS decided that the group could not be refused the right to advertise during the 60-day window if their commercials could reasonably be seen as a political appeal other than support for or opposition to a political candidateMore recently, millionaire’s amendment found unconstitutional
58George W. Bush’s innovation BundlingLarge donors tap their friends for maximum individual donations then give in a ‘bundle’ to the candidate committee$500K bundles used to support Bush’s primary campaign$100K plus “Pioneers”Primary funding total $95.5 millionTook federal dollars for general election
61BundlingWhile there are disclosure requirements for bundling, they only go into effect when a bundler personally hands over checks. Most campaigns get around the disclosure provision by not having the bundler ever touch the checks.
62The Bush and Kerry campaigns evaded the disclosure regulation for earmarked contributions through the new style of bundling activity in which identification numbers are assigned to each bundler, who in turn ask contributors to write the bundler’s ID number on the checks and then give the checks to the campaign on their own. This allowed the bundler to get credit from the campaign for the contributions, while sidestepping the FEC’s official disclosure requirements.
65Internet innovations in finance Howard Dean developed new means to expand funding through small individual donations collected via the InternetBarack Obama expanded on the idea and has generated huge sums through small donations on the Internet$150 million in September 2008Ron Paul extremely successful fundraiser during Republican primaries