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Weekly Digest

 

For Immediate Release

Contact

Judith Ingram

March 16, 2012

Julia Queen
  Christian Hilland
   
 

ISSUE 2012-11

Weekly Digest

Week of March 12 – 16

COMMISSION MEETINGS AND HEARINGS

No Commission Executive Sessions or Open Meetings were scheduled this week.

ADVISORY OPINIONS

Drafts

AO 2012-05 (Lantos Foundation). On March 16, the Commission made public a draft of Advisory Opinion 2012-05. Tom Lantos for Congress is the authorized committee of the late Congressman Tom Lantos. The Lantos Foundation is a charitable organization established after Congressman Lantos' death by his family, friends, and supporters in order to continue his work in advancing human rights.The Committee and the Foundation ask whether the Committee may, subject to certain limitations, donate its remaining funds to the Foundation.

Requests Received

AOR 2012-11 (Free Speech). On March 12, the Commission made public Advisory Opinion Request 2012-11. Free Speech is an unincorporated nonprofit association that plans to finance certain advertisements and ask for donations to fund its activities. It asks (1) whether its advertisements would be deemed express advocacy communications, (2) whether funds received in response to its donation requests would be deemed contributions, and (3) whether its activities would require Free Speech to register and report as a political committee. Free Speech requests expedited consideration of its Advisory Opinion pursuant to the Commission’s Advisory Opinion Procedure. The Commission must issue a response no later than 60 days after the receipt of the complete request, specifically by May 8, 2012.

AOR 2012-12 (Dunkin’ Brands, Inc.). On March 13, the Commission made public Advisory Opinion Request 2012-12. Dunkin' Brands, Inc. asks whether the executive and administrative personnel of its franchisees and licensees, as well as non-corporate franchisees and licensees, may make contributions to Dunkin' Brands' separate segregated fund. The Commission must issue a response no later than 60 days after receipt of the complete request, specifically by May 7.

AOR 2012-13 (Physician Hospitals of America). On March 13, the Commission made public Advisory Opinion Request 2012-13. Physician Hospitals of America is an association of physician-owned hospitals. The hospitals, and the physicians who own them, provide services to patients in government-sponsored healthcare programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare and CHAMPUS.  Physician Hospitals of America asks whether this fact would prohibit the association, the hospitals, and the physicians from making contributions to independent expenditure-only political committees. The Commission must issue a response no later than 60 days after the receipt of the complete request, specifically by May 5.

AOR 2012-14 (Shaun McCutcheon). On March 14, the Commission made public Advisory Opinion Request 2012-14. . The biennial statutory limit on the aggregate amount of contributions that any one individual may make to federal candidates during the current election cycle is $46,200. Shaun McCutcheon asks if he may make contributions to candidates totaling $51,900 in the current election cycle. The Commission must issue a response no later than 60 days after the receipt of the complete request, specifically by May 8.

Advisory Opinions and Requests are available through the Advisory Opinions search page in the Law and Regulations section of the Commission website.

AUDITS

Repayment Determination After Administrative Review for John Edwards and John Edwards for President. On March 16, the Commission made public the Repayment Determination After Administrative Review for John Edwards and John Edwards for President. The Commission determined, after administrative review, that John Edwards and John Edwards for President must repay $2,136,507 to the United States Treasuryfor matching funds received in excess of the candidate’s entitlement.

Final Audit Report on Smoot for Congress. On March 13, the Commission made public the Final Audit Report of the Commission on Smoot for Congress (SFC), covering campaign finance activity between March 11, 2009 and December 31, 2010. The Commission found (1) a misstatement of receipts and disbursements and (2) that SFC received 15 contributions from apparently prohibited sources.

Click here for general information about final Audit Reports. Audits are segregated into three categories: Authorized Committees, Unauthorized Committees, and Title 26 Audit Reports.

LITIGATION

Wagner v. FEC (No. 11-cv-1841 (JEB)). On March 12, the plaintiffs filed a Reply in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. The lawsuit challenges the constitutionality of the portion of 2 U.S.C. 441c that bars contributions by individuals who have contracts with the federal government.

OUTREACH

On March 13, Chair Caroline C. Hunter and Commissioner Steven T. Walther discussed Commission operations, enforcement procedures and the presidential public funding program with Mohammed Hussein Al Hakimi, Chairman of Yemen's Supreme Commission for Election and Referendum.

On March 12, Communications Specialist Stephanie Caccomo discussed the presidential public funding program and recent campaign finance court cases with members of the Minnesota College Student Association

UPCOMING COMMISSION MEETINGS

March 20: The Commission is scheduled to hold an Executive Session.

March 22: The Commission is scheduled to hold an Open Session.

UPCOMING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS

March 21, Washington, DC. Seminar/Webinar for House and Senate Campaigns and Political Party Committees. Registration information and the schedule are on the Educational Outreach page of the Commission website.

April 25, Washington, DC. Seminar/Webinar for Corporations and their PACs.  Registration information and the schedule are on the Educational Outreach page of the Commission website.

May 23, Washington, DC. Seminar/Webinar for Trade Associations, Labor Organizations, Membership Organizations and their PACs. Registration information and the schedule are on the Educational Outreach page of the Commission website.  

UPCOMING REPORTING DUE DATES

March 20: March Monthly Reports are due. For more information on monthly reporting dates, refer to the 2012 Monthly Reporting page of the Commission website.

April 15: April Quarterly Reports are due. For information on quarterly reporting dates, refer to the 2012 Quarterly Reporting page of the Commission website.

OTHER RESOURCES

The Record news page is available in the Publications section of the Commission website. Sign up to receive email notification when new articles are posted.

Printed copies of the 2012 edition of 11 CFR are now available. To order, call (800)424-9530 (press 6) or send an email to info@fec.gov.

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