ABSTRACT

Federal Election Commission: Membership and Policymaking Quorum, In Brief [Updated October 6, 2020]   [open pdf - 976KB]

From the Summary: "The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is the nation's civil campaign finance regulator. The agency ensures that campaign fundraising and spending is publicly reported; that those regulated by the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) and by commission regulations comply and have access to guidance; and that publicly financed presidential campaigns receive funding. The FEC currently is operating without a policymaking quorum because only three of six commissioners remain in office. At least four agreeing votes are required to take policymaking or enforcement actions. It is unclear when additional nominations and Senate consideration to restore a quorum might occur. [...] This CRS [Congressional Research Service] report briefly explains the kinds of actions that FECA precludes when a quorum is not possible because fewer than four FEC members are in office. Among other powers, without a quorum, the commission cannot hold hearings, issue rules, or enforce campaign finance law and regulation. Campaign finance law and regulation remain in effect and may be enforced once a quorum is restored. Agency operations continue with remaining commissioners and staff. The current quorum loss marks the third in the FEC's history. The second occurred recently, between August 31, 2019, and June 5, 2020, when a confirmation briefly restored a fourth commissioner to office. In addition, the FEC lacked a policymaking quorum for six months in 2008. This report will be updated in the event of substantial changes in the Federal Election Commission's policymaking quorum or the status of commission nominations."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R45160
Author:
Publisher:
Date:
2020-10-06
Copyright:
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/
Format:
pdf
Media Type:
application/pdf
URL:
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