News Releases, Media Advisories

For Immediate Release:                                                                              Contact:  Sharon Snyder
July 7, 1999                                                                                                                     Ron Harris
                                                                                                                                          Ian Stirton
                                                                                                                                          Kelly Huff

IF THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION WERE HELD IN 1999

WASHINGTON -- If the presidential election were held in 1999, the Federal Election Commission calculates that each primary contender would be able to spend nearly $40 million seeking his or her party’s nomination. Party nominees would be able to spend at least $66 million in the general election.

The FEC releases figures one year in advance of the presidential election year to meet the needs of campaigns in the early formative stages. The figures are NOT the final word in spending for the 2000 presidential race. Official spending computations will not be available until early 2000, since they must be updated for changes in state voting age populations (VAPs) and cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs).

The FEC figures include overall spending limits and limits for spending in each state. They apply only to those campaigns choosing to accept federal matching funds. Campaigns which opt to forego federal funding may spend unlimited amounts of money.

The overall "base" spending limit for presidential primary campaigns is $10 million, plus a cost-of-living adjustment (over 1974). At this time, the "base" spending limit it $33,060,000. An exemption for 20% of a campaign’s fundraising expenses effectively raises the amount primary contenders may spend in the pre-convention period to $39,672,000. Campaigns may spend unlimited amounts for legal and accounting costs they incur to comply with the law.

State spending limits are keyed to the voting age population of each state, with a minimum of at least $200,000, plus a COLA for those states with a low VAP. The formula for setting state limits is 16 X VAP + COLA. A less populated state, such as New Hampshire, would have a limit of $200,000, plus COLA, or $661,200. A larger state, such as California, would have a limit of 16 x 23,755,000 (VAP), plus COLA, or $12,565,445.

If they choose public funding, the two major party nominees will be given at least $66.12 million each for the general election campaign ($20 million, plus COLA over 1974). Furthermore, they would not be allowed to raise private contributions for the campaign, except for legal and accounting costs, which are not subject to the spending limit. The two major parties will be able to spend at least $13,252,167 million on their nominees in coordinated expenditures.

 

State-By-State Expenditure Limitations

For Presidential Primary Candidates

If The Election Were Held In 1999

State

VAP

Expenditure

State

VAP

Expenditure

(in thousands)

Limitation

(in thousands)

Limitation

Alabama

3,268

$1,728,641

New Hampshire

886

$661,200

Alaska

422

$661,200

New Jersey

6,125

$3,239,880

Arizona

3,405

$1,801,109

New Mexico

1,233

$661,200

Arkansas

1,885

$997,090

New York

13,673

$7,232,470

California

23,755

$12,565,445

North Carolina

5,627

$2,976,458

Colorado

2,930

$1,549,853

North Dakota

476

$661,200

Connecticut

2,483

$1,313,408

Ohio

8,365

$4,424,750

Delaware

565

$661,200

Oklahoma

2,467

$1,304,944

DC

420

$661,200

Oregon

2,457

$1,299,655

Florida

11,376

$6,017,449

Pennsylvania

9,142

$4,835,752

Georgia

5,620

$2,972,755

Rhode Island

751

$661,200

Hawaii

895

$661,200

South Carolina

2,877

$1,521,818

Idaho

878

$661,200

South Dakota

537

$661,200

Illinois

8,858

$4,685,528

Tennessee

4,099

$2,168,207

Indiana

4,382

$2,317,903

Texas

14,130

$7,474,205

Iowa

2,140

$1,131,974

Utah

1,398

$739,486

Kansas

1,932

$1,021,951

Vermont

450

$661,200

Kentucky

2,948

$1,559,374

Virginia

5,147

$2,722,557

Louisiana

3,178

$1,681,035

Washington

4,217

$2,230,624

Maine

953

$661,200

West Virginia

1,407

$744,247

Maryland

3,848

$2,035,438

Wisconsin

3,872

$2,048,133

Massachusetts

4,689

$2,480,293

Wyoming

352

$661,200

Michigan

7,266

$3,843,423

Minnesota

3,466

$1,833,375

US Territories:
Mississippi

1,995

$1,055,275

American Samoa

$661,200

Missouri

4,032

$2,132,767

Guam

$661,200

Montana

656

$661,200

Puerto Rico

$661,200

Nebraska

1,217

$661,200

Virgin Islands

$661,200

Nevada

1,280

$677,069

Overall Limitation

$33,060,000