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News Releases


For Immediate Release


Bob Biersack

October 11, 2007

George Smaragdis

Michelle Ryan


FEC Approves Five Advisory Opinions

Issues include PAC Structures, Use of Campaign and Leadership PAC Funds, Contributions via Online Banking, and Participation in State Campaigns

WASHINGTON – At its open meeting today the Federal Election Commission (FEC/Commission) approved five Advisory Opinions. 

In Advisory Opinion (AO) 2007-17 the Commission, responding to a request from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, concluded that a committee that receives contributions in the form of checks  from individuals using online banking services is not required to seek additional clarification as to the source of the contribution when the check is signed by a bank official pursuant to individual account holder’s instructions and the personal account on which the check is drawn is clear.

In  AO 2007-21, the Commission concluded that Representative Rush Holt (NJ-12) may serve as the “honorary chairman” of the 2007 general election campaigns of publicly funded State candidates because his proposed activities would not violate the Federal Election Campaign Act’s (the Act) provisions that restrict Federal candidates and officeholders’ activities in connection with non-Federal elections. 

In AO 2007-18, the Commission concluded that Representative Charles Rangel (NY-15), Chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ways and Means, may use funds from his principal campaign committee or the National Leadership PAC to pay for the commissioning of an official portrait of Chairman Rangel which would be donated to the House of Representatives. 

Advisory Opinion 2007-16 finds that the American Kennel Club (AKC) and its voting clubs and accredited clubs are membership organizations and are affiliated with each other for purposes of the Act. 

Finally, in its consideration of AO 2007-15, requested on behalf of GMAC LLC, the Commission was unable to reach a conclusion as to whether GMAC LLC may pay the establishment and administrative costs of a separate segregated fund (PAC) connected to a subsidiary corporation.  However, the FEC determined that the PAC could include “GMAC LLC” in the PAC name and use “GMAC PAC” as an abbreviation.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces federal campaign finance laws. The FEC has jurisdiction over the financing of campaigns for the U.S. House, the U.S. Senate, the Presidency and the Vice Presidency. Established in 1975, the FEC is composed of six Commissioners who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.