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News Releases


For Immediate Release   Contact:  Judith Ingram
September 29, 2016   Julia Queen
    Christian Hilland
PDF .pdf version of this news release    

FEC Approves NPRM, Federal Register Notice, AO and Audit, Discusses Range of Initiatives


WASHINGTON – The Federal Election Commission today approved a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Technological Modernization, a Federal Register Notice on a comment period and hearing on a potential rulemaking on Internet Communication Disclaimers, and an advisory opinion. The Commission also discussed an initiative to promote voluntary compliance, as well as proposals to submit legislative recommendations aimed to improve the presidential public financing program, attack so-called Scam PACs and initiate a rulemaking on safeguarding U.S. elections from foreign spending

REG 2013-01: Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Technological Modernization. On September 29, the Commission unanimously approved a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Technological Modernization, which proposes changes to more than 100 Commission regulations to address contributions and expenditures made by electronic means, such as through internet-based payment processors or text messaging, to eliminate and update references to outdated technologies, and to address similar issues. The Commission was unable to reach agreement by the required four affirmative votes on an amendment proposing that the press exemption be clarified to include books and films. The Commission will accept comments on the Notice after it is published in the Federal Register.

REG 2011-02: Internet Communication Disclaimers. On September 29, the Commission unanimously approved a Federal Register Notice to reopen the comment period and announce a public hearing to discuss the Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Internet Communication Disclaimers. The Commission will accept comments on the Notice once it is published in the Federal Register.

Proposed Amendments to Directive 52. This agenda item was held over.

Promoting Voluntary Compliance. The Commission discussed an initiative to promote voluntary compliance through a list of basic compliance tips the agency will submit to a national newspaper, as well as distributing through social media and other media outlets, to complement existing outreach efforts.

Presidential Public Financing Legislative Recommendations. The Commission discussed a proposal to put forward legislative recommendations to modernize and improve the presidential public financing program.

Advisory Opinion 2016-10 (Parker). The Commission approved an advisory opinion in response to a request from Caroline Goodson Parker. The Commission concluded that as a United States citizen living abroad, the requestor may solicit contributions or donations to state and local party committees, but that she may not knowingly do so from a foreign national. The Commission also concluded that the requestor is not required to notify those whom she solicits about the prohibition on soliciting foreign nationals, and that the requestor may inform a state or local party committee that she is soliciting contributions or donations to that committee.

Proposal to Attack Scam PACs. The Commission discussed a proposal to combat entities colloquially known as "Scam PACs", using disclaimer rules, better Commission disclosure and legislative recommendations to Congress. The Commission agreed to form a staff working group to develop specific proposals.

Revised Proposal to Launch Rulemaking to Ensure that U.S. Political Spending Is Free from Foreign Influence. The Commission discussed a revised proposal to initiate a rulemaking examining the role of foreign political spending in U.S. elections following the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC.

Final Audit Report on Freedomworks for America. Prior to today’s open meeting, the Commission approved the Final Audit Report of the Commission on Freedomworks for America, covering campaign finance activity between July 15, 2011, and December 31, 2012.  The Audit examined reports and statements filed by the Committee and discovered no material non-compliance.


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 of Representatives, 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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