Vol. 7, No. 2, October 2004

Election Law and Finance

[Updated 7/09/12]

 

Federal Election Campaign Laws

This lengthy document (234 pages), provided by the Federal Election Commission (FEC), is a compilation of the federal campaign laws, as of April 2008. It contains the texts, as amended, of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, the Presidential Election Campaign Fund Act, Presidential Primary Matching Payment Account Act, and other relevant provisions of federal law. This pamphlet also contains a lengthy and detailed index.

Campaign Finance Law Sources

Another site from the FEC, this page provides legal documents, including the text of laws, regulations, advisory opinions, and legislative recommendations; publications, including the FEC annual report and brochures; educational materials; and information about committee meetings and upcoming advisory opinions. These information products are designed to make campaign finance law accessible to the public; the emphasis is on federal information, but limited state information is available as well.

Campaign Finance Reports and Data

Financial disclosure reports filed with the FEC from 1993 - present, candidate and PAC summaries, and donations made by individuals, and those made to particular candidates or members of committees are available at this site provided by the FEC. Other information here covers the 2004 presidential election, the 2002 Congressional elections, and the 2000 presidential and Congressional elections. Summary and some audit information is available for the 1998 and 1996 federal elections. Information about political parties and political action committees (PACs) are also available for selected years.

Presidential Elections Reform Program: About the Electoral College

This site explains details of voting in the Electoral College system, including controversies which have arisen from its use, information about "faithless electors," criticism and reform options. It is hosted by FairVote, a non-profit organization dedicated to researching and promoting public understanding of "more democratic voting systems," such as instant runoff voting.

OpenSecrets.org

The Center for Responsive Politics, a non-profit research group that tracks the effects of money on politics, elections, and public policy, provides a rich resource of information regarding campaign fund-raising and spending for current races; political donations by geography, sector, and industry; a donor look-up function to identify individuals and how much they have contributed to whom; and news stories regarding political fund-raising. State and local information is available for some jurisdictions, in addition to the national and federal data.