Federal Politics

Published — March 17, 2006 Updated — May 19, 2014 at 12:19 pm ET

Fund-raising groups at a glance

Introduction

Politicians spend much of their time and energy raising money to fund ever-more-costly election campaigns. They say it is a necessary evil, though critics of current campaign finance laws say the rules allow widespread abuse and corrupt practices. Here’s a glossary of terms to explain what some of the organizations involved in fund-raising are and what candidates can do with the money they amass.

Political Action Committees (PACs) are fund-raising organizations not connected to a political party that are formed by corporations, unions or other groups. Contributions may be made by members, employees or others. Most PACs target congressional elections; they may contribute up to $5,000 to a candidate for each campaign (primary, runoff, and general election). PACs also may donate up to $15,000 annually to any national political party committee and $5,000 annually to another PAC.

Leadership PACs are formed and controlled by politicians to raise money independent of their own campaigns. Their funds can be used to pay for travel and other expenses, to make donations to other candidates’ campaign committees and to further the politician’s own career. Individuals may contribute up to $5,000 a year.

Campaign Committees are organizations officially affiliated with a political candidate and registered with the Federal Election Commission. Their purpose is to raise and spend money on primary, runoff, and general elections.

Political Party Committees are organizations officially affiliated with a political party and registered with the FEC. Their purpose is to raise money for campaigns. They are not subject to the same rules as PACs.

527 groups are nonprofit organizations formed under Section 527 of the Internal Revenue Code, which grants tax-exempt status to political committees at the national, state and local level. They seek to influence elections and policy debates at all levels of government, but are barred from advocating explicitly for the election or defeat of candidates. They are not regulated by the FEC or state elections commissions, and therefore are not subject to state or federal contribution limits.

Contribution Limits for 2005-2006 per Federal Election Commission Guidelines

To each candidate or candidate committee per election

To national party committee per calendar year

To any other political committee per calendar year [1]

Individual may give

$2,100#

$26,700#

$5,000

National Party Committee may give

$5,000

No limit

$5,000

State, District & Local Party Committee may give

$5,000

(combined limit)

No limit

$5,000

(combined limit)

PAC (multicandidate) [2] may give

$5,000

$15,000

$5,000

PAC (not multicandidate) may give

$2,100#

$26,700#

$5,000

#These contribution limits are increased for inflation in odd-numbered years.

[1] — A contribution earmarked for a candidate through a political committee counts against the original contributor’s limit for that candidate. In certain circumstances, the contribution also may count against the contributor’s limit to the PAC.

[2] — A multicandidate committee is a political committee with more than 50 contributors that has been registered for at least six months and, with the exception of state party committees, has made contributions to five or more candidates for federal office.

[3] — A federal candidate’s authorized committee(s) can contribute no more than $2,000 per election to another federal candidate’s authorized committees.

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SOUTH JERSEYTed SiroisMark SullivanTom LarkinAnonymous Recent comment authors
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Mark Sullivan
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Mark Sullivan

Trump needs to conduct these activities because the entire MSM media, excluding Fox, is campaigning against him 24/7/365.

Didn’t Monica’s boyfriend’s wife and various criminal enterprises outspend Trump by almost 2-1?

CapitalistRoader
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CapitalistRoader

Why wouldn’t he get an early start on fund raising? Hillary outspent him two-to-one in 2016. The Dem’s are the party of big money. The President knows this and is attempting to get a jump on it. Of course the Dem candidate will outspend him in 2020 so it’s only rational that he starts fund raising now.

George Young
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George Young

Oh brother. We just 8 years of the Campaigner – in – Chief. Where was this journalistic rectal thermometer then. Just another article about 2000 words too long that merely takes another slap at Trump for something he far from initiated.

j stevenson
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j stevenson

The big difference between Trump and all the rest is his refusing to accept funds from lobbyists, so they don’t have the White House access they are used to. These are the donors who buy the presidency and are as pixxed off that he won the election as are the media and the Dems. Lobbyists have never been shut out of the WH and Trump has told them he is not for sale.

jan v
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jan v

all the lobbyists are running all our government agencies and all the career civil servants who know how to run the country have been fired. YOU think this is a good thing ? what a crock…

thomas alessi
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thomas alessi

I am for Trump

Martin Shellabarger
Guest

J. Stevenson, what are you drinking? Trump has more lobbyists in his administration than probably any other president. Trump is totally “for sale”, and the corporations know it. Grow a brain!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Trump needs to be impeached and tossed in prison. Then have the key thrown away so he will never be free. Then he can see how it feels not to have freedom.

Mark Sullivan
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Mark Sullivan

Thank you for the usual insightful leftist low IQ Snowflake response.

barney
Guest

hes not imprisoning them hes sending them back to their country chill tf out

SOUTH JERSEY
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SOUTH JERSEY

WHY DONT YOU HAVE FREEDOM?

Tom Larkin
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Tom Larkin

First, something positive. I was happy to learn of empirical information in article. BUT, the article was so slanted against President Trump as to be deemed fake news (“Perhaps Trump just lied.” (Two different issues)). The article mentions that President Trump raised over $67 million, but ended 2018 with $19 million. President Trump spent over $40 million 2016 and 2017. President Trump conducted 57 political rallies. The article notes the hats and T-shirts sold, but NEVER MENTIONS THE INCREASE IN THE NUMBER OF REPUBLICAN SENATORS during a mid-term election that lost the House and the number of political rallies in… Read more »

Ted Sirois
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Ted Sirois

At least Trump is getting donations from willing donors. Fresh from his first election, Obama used billions of our children’s tax dollars to save thousands of union jobs in the car industry and bailed out the banks and many Wall Street businesses. This secured his source of reelection funds for his reelection four years later.

South Jersey
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South Jersey

TRUMP 2020; IS AN AMAZINGLY SMART MAN! VERY ORIGINAL & CREATIVE. I AM HAPPY TO HAVE HIS AS POTUS.

SOUTH JERSEY
Guest
SOUTH JERSEY

THIS ARTICLE WAS OBVIOUSLY WRITTEN BY, A TRUMP-HATE-GROUP. THAT FEELS; IT IS NOT NORMAL TO BE SUCCESSFUL WITH YOUR OWN BRAND NAME. WHEN, IF FACT, IT IS NORMAL! >>>>> THIS IS >>> FAKE NEWS!!! <<<< ie: A PACK-OF-LIES; SPUN INTO; DEFAMATION OF CHARACTER. FOR A SINISTER-AGENDA OF; FASCIST DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST, COUP D'ETAT

David
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David

Are you on some kind of drugs? Writing in caps makes me think that you are grumpy old fart or a uneducated hillbilly.