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For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Bob Biersack

October 30, 2007

George Smaragdis

Michelle Ryan

 

FEC approves a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Reporting Contributions Bundled by Lobbyists, Registrants and their PACs, and Advisory Opinion on XM Radio’s “POTUS ’08” Channel

Washington – At its open meeting today, the Federal Election Commission (FEC/ the Commission) unanimously approved a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on Reporting Contributions Bundled by Lobbyists, Registrants and the PACs of Lobbyists and Registrants. The proposed rules implement section 204 of the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007 (HLOGA). The Commission also approved an Advisory Opinion (AO) in response to a request from XM Satellite Radio Inc. (XM).

The NPRM approved by the Commission would require authorized candidate committees, leadership political action committees (PACs) and political party committees to disclose certain information about lobbyists and registrants, and PACs established or controlled by lobbyists or registrants that forward, or are credited with raising, two or more contributions whose aggregate total exceeds $15,000 during a specific period of time. Comments on the proposed rules are due by November 30, 2007.  The Commission will announce the date of a hearing for this rulemaking at a later date.  The Commission is moving with considerable speed to implement both the bundling and the travel provisions of HLOGA, and will have final regulations in place well within the six-month period mandated by Congress. 

FEC Chairman Robert Lenhard noted that “(T)he Commission’s successful handling of an ambitious rulemaking schedule will ensure that everyone involved in the 2008 campaign will have a clear understanding of the rules governing campaign finance.”

The Commission also approved AO 2007-20 in response to a request from XM. The Commission concluded that XM may provide free airtime to Presidential candidates on its new channel, POTUS ’08, because XM’s satellite radio broadcasts are exempt under the press exemption.  The Commission also concluded that communications supplied to XM by Presidential candidates must contain disclaimers identifying the political committee that made a disbursement for the communication.  

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.

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