Congressional Research Service Reports - 436 Matching Results

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Legislative Options After Citizens United v. FEC: Constitutional and Legal Issues

Description: In Citizens United v. FEC, the Supreme Court invalidated two provisions of the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA), finding that they were unconstitutional under the First Amendment. In response to the Supreme Court's ruling, various proposals have been discussed and legislation has been introduced in the 111th Congress. This report provides an analysis of the constitutional and legal issues raised by several proposals, organized by regulatory topic: increasing disclaimer requirements, increasing disclosure for tax-exempt organizations, requiring shareholder notification and approval, restricting U.S. subsidiaries of foreign corporations, restricting political expenditures by government contractors and grantees, taxing corporate independent expenditures, and providing public financing for congressional campaigns. The report also addresses amending the Constitution.
Date: July 27, 2010
Creator: Whitaker, L. Paige; Lunder, Erika K.; Manuel, Kate M.; Maskell, Jack & Seitzinger, Michael V.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Zimbabwe: Background

Description: This report provides background on events leading up to and surrounding the country's most recent elections, in March and June 2008.
Date: July 8, 2010
Creator: Ploch, Lauren
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Funding of Presidential Nominating Conventions: Overview and Policy Options

Description: This report provides an overview and analysis of two recurring questions surrounding the federal government's role in financing presidential nominating conventions. First, how much public funding supports presidential nominating conventions? Second, what options exist for changing that amount if Congress chooses to do so? Both issues have generated controversy in the past and continue to be the subject of debate.
Date: August 22, 2008
Creator: Garrett, R. Sam & Reese, Shawn
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

China's Leaders Quash Hong Kong's Hopes for Democratic Election Reforms

Description: This report briefly discusses a recent decision by China's National People's Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC) that places strict conditions on any possible electoral reforms in Hong Kong. The report covers the decision, Hong Kong's response, and options for Congress.
Date: September 5, 2014
Creator: Martin, Michael F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campaign Financing: Highlights and Chronology of Current Federal Law

Description: This report summarizes major provisions of federal law and offers a chronology of key legislative and judicial actions which govern financial activity of federal election campaigns. The laws are based on two principal statutes: the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1971, as amended in 1974, 1976, 1979, and 2002, and the Revenue Act of 1971.
Date: December 13, 2004
Creator: Cantor, Joseph E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campaign Financing: Highlights and Chronology of Current Federal Law

Description: This report summarizes major provisions of federal law and offers a chronology of key legislative and judicial actions which govern financial activity of federal election campaigns. The laws are based on two principal statutes: the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1971, as amended in 1974, 1976, 1979, and 2002, and the Revenue Act of 1971.
Date: January 24, 2003
Creator: Cantor, Joseph E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Presidential Nominating Process and the National Party Conventions, 2016: Frequently Asked Questions

Description: This report provides answers to frequently asked questions about the presidential nominating process, including how the delegates to the national conventions are chosen, the differences between a caucus and a primary, national party rules changes for 2016, and the national conventions themselves.
Date: December 30, 2015
Creator: Coleman, Kevin J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campaign Finance: Issues Before the U.S. Supreme Court in McConnell v. FEC

Description: This report provides a summary of the issues presented by 12 groups of appellants in their jurisdictional statements in 2003. Shortly after the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA), P.L. 107-155 (H.R. 2356, 107th Cong.) was enacted in March 2002 (also known as the McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform legislation), Senator Mitch McConnell and others filed suit in U.S. District Court for D.C. against the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) arguing that provisions of the law are unconstitutional. Ultimately, eleven suits challenging BCRA were brought by more than 80 plaintiffs and consolidated into one lead case, McConnell v. FEC. On May 2, 2003, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued its decision in McConnell v. FEC, No. 02-CV-0582 striking down some key provisions of the law as unconstitutional, but on May 19, it issued a stay of its ruling, which leaves BCRA, as enacted, in effect until the Supreme Court issues a decision. (For information about the decision, see CRS Report RS21511, Campaign Finance: Brief Overview of McConnell v. FEC.) Under the BCRA expedited review provision, the court's decision will be reviewed directly by the U.S. Supreme Court, which scheduled oral argument for September 8, 2003.
Date: June 20, 2003
Creator: Whitaker, L. P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campaign Finance Policy After Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission: Issues and Options for Congress

Description: This report provides an overview of selected campaign finance policy options that may be relevant to the ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. It also briefly comments on how Citizens United might affect political advertising. A complete understanding of how Citizens United will affect the campaign and policy environments is likely to be unavailable until at least the conclusion of the 2010 election cycle.
Date: February 1, 2010
Creator: Garrett, R. S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Proposals to Eliminate Public Financing of Presidential Campaigns

Description: Congress is faced with determining whether it wants public financing of presidential campaigns to continue and, if so, how. Proposals to curtail the presidential public financing program have been a consistent theme in recent Congresses. This report provides a brief policy overview and raises potential issues for congressional consideration.
Date: March 3, 2015
Creator: Garrett, R. S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Funding of Presidential Nominating Conventions: An Overview

Description: This report provides a historical overview of how Presidential Election Campaign Fund (PECF) convention funding functioned. It also describes private funding sources that remain available after legislation (H.R. 2019) became law (P.L. 113-94) eliminating PECF funding for convention operations.
Date: May 4, 2016
Creator: Garrett, R. S. & Reese, Shawn
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Afghanistan: Elections, Constitution, and Government

Description: In 2004 and 2005, Afghanistan adopted a permanent constitution and elected a president and a parliament. The parliament is emerging as a significant force in Afghan politics, as shown in debate over a new cabinet proposed in March 2006. However, insurgent violence continues to threaten Afghan stability. See CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy, by Kenneth Katzman.
Date: March 14, 2006
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Eighteen Year Old Vote: The Twenty-sixth Amendment and Subsequent Voting Rates of Newly Enfranchised Age Groups

Description: This report traces the progress of proposals to expand the right to vote to citizens between the ages of 18 and 21, culminating in the ratification of the 26th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States in 1971. It also reviews the voting rates of the newly enfranchised age group and compares them to voting rates of other age groups.
Date: May 20, 1983
Creator: Neale, Thomas H
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

527 Political Organizations: Legislation in the 109th Congress

Description: The 109th Congress is examining the role of groups organized under section 527 of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) that are involved in federal elections but are not operating under the requirements and restrictions of federal election law. Although such groups only recently emerged into public awareness, in 2004, they were widely seen as major players in the presidential election, with more than $400 million spent seeking to influence the outcome. Strictly speaking, the term “527” refers to a section of the Internal Revenue Code, which was added in 1975 to provide tax-exempt status to federal, state, and local political organizations, as defined in that statute. The controversy over these 527 groups arises from two factors: the different definitions used in federal election law and tax law as to what constitutes election-related activity and, further, the lack of certainty as to what election law itself regulates or may permissibly regulate. This report discusses these groups in detail, as well as related legislation.
Date: March 31, 2006
Creator: Cantor, Joseph E. & Lunder, Erika
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campaign Finance: Constitutional and Legal Issues of Soft Money

Description: Prior to enactment of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA), P.L. 107-155, the term “soft money” generally referred to unregulated funds, perceived as resulting from loopholes in the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA), 2 U.S.C. §§ 431 et seq. Generally, the intent of BCRA, (effective Nov. 6, 2002), which amends FECA, is to restrict the raising and spending of soft money. This Issue Brief discusses constitutional and legal issues surrounding two major types of soft money that BCRA regulates: political party soft money and soft money used for issue advocacy communications. Corporate and labor union soft money, which FECA exempts from regulation and is not addressed by BCRA, is also discussed.
Date: July 21, 2004
Creator: Whitaker, L. Paige
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department