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Political Reform Independent Campaign Expenditures

| Indpendent Expenditures | May 11, 2013

Peter Bagatelos

Peter A. Bagatelos is an attorney specializing in campaign law, election law, and non-profit organizations. Having practiced since 1976, Mr. Bagatelos has represented numerous clients involved in the political process at the federal, state and local levels. Mr. Bagatelos’ clients have included elected officials, candidates, political committees, charitable entities, civic/social welfare organizations, trade associations, corporations, non-profits, unions, ballot measure committees, PACs, major donors, and political consultants

campaign expenditures

Independent Campaign Expenditures

Independent Campaign Expenditures – Payment for a communication to support or oppose  a candidate  who is NOT in consultation or in coordination with the candidate or committee has no reporting requirements.

If you coordinated with the person or organization who paid for the communication you must report it as a non-monetary contribution.

Political reform act prohibits candidates from using independent expenditures  to support or oppose another candidate.

Coordination and Independent Expenditures

By definition, Independent Expenditures cannot be made at the request of a campaign or candidate, or coordinated with a campaign committee.

According to Federal law, an agent is someone who has “actual authority, either express or implied” to do one or more of a list of actions on behalf of a campaign. According to that list, an otherwise independent expenditure could be invalidated if, an “agent” does something as simple as suggesting an advertisement be made. To prevent this, some groups claim that they sequester staff months before an election.


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