Federal Election Commission



999 E Street NW., Washington, DC 20463

Phone, 202-694-1100 or 800-424-9530 (toll free). Internet, www.fec.gov.

Chairman Scott E. Thomas

Vice Chairman Michael E. Toner

Commissioners David M. Mason, Danny L. McDonald, Bradley A. Smith, Ellen L. Weintraub

Staff Director James A. Pehrkon

General Counsel Lawrence Norton

Inspector General Lynne A. McFarland


The Federal Election Commission has exclusive jurisdiction in the administration and civil enforcement of laws regulating the acquisition and expenditure of campaign funds to ensure compliance by participants in the Federal election campaign process. Its chief mission is to provide public disclosure of campaign finance activities and effect voluntary compliance by providing the public with information on the laws and regulations concerning campaign finance.

The Federal Election Commission is an independent agency established by section 309 of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (2 U.S.C. 437c). It is composed of six Commissioners appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate. The act also provides for three statutory officers--the Staff Director, the General Counsel, and the Inspector General--who are appointed by the Commission.


The Commission administers and enforces the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (2 U.S.C. 431 et seq.), and the Revenue Act, as amended (26 U.S.C. 1 et seq.). These laws provide for the public funding of Presidential elections, public disclosure of the financial activities of political committees involved in Federal elections, and limitations and prohibitions on contributions and expenditures made to influence Federal elections (Presidency, Senate, and House of Representatives).

Public Funding of Presidential Elections The Commission oversees the public financing of Presidential elections by certifying Federal payments to primary candidates, general election nominees, and national nominating conventions. It also audits recipients of Federal funds and may require repayments to the U.S. Treasury if a committee makes nonqualified campaign expenditures.

Disclosure The Commission ensures the public disclosure of the campaign finance activities reported by political committees supporting Federal candidates. Committee reports, filed regularly, disclose where campaign money comes from and how it is spent. The...

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