Campaign Finance In a Nutshell: Risks and Compliance after Citizens United

February 9, 2012
With the 2012 election cycle well under way, clients should be aware of the complex legal and regulatory landscape of campaign finance. Citizens United and its progeny increased the available avenues for organizational participation in elections, shifting the focus from direct campaign contributions to independent expenditure committees. This sort of rapid legal evolution jeopardizes the soundness of existing compliance programs, leaving clients vulnerable to serious but manageable risks. This presentation explains the basics of campaign finance, including major provisions of the Federal Election Campaign Act, the aftermath of Citizens United, the rise of the Super PAC, and the hallmarks of an effective campaign finance compliance program. It also will address  the unique position of nonprofits, which are subject to both Federal Election Commission and Internal Revenue Service regulation.