Some Action We Can Take

In light of the Project Veritas report on the actions of CNN to tilt the scales during the election, here is some action we can take.

Corporations and labor organizations are generally prohibited from making contributions in connection with a federal election. However, there are specific activities that they can conduct that do not result in contributions. These include sponsoring a political action committeemaking independent expenditures, and endorsing federal candidates. Please visit our website for more information on permissible activities by these organizations.

However, if you believe a violation of the federal election campaign laws has occurred or is about to occur, you may file a complaint. The complaint must be made in writing and sent to the Office of General Counsel, Federal Election Commission, 1050 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20463. The original must be submitted along with three copies, if possible. Facsimile or e-mail transmissions are not acceptable.

Please note that complaints received by mail on or after June 18, 2020, will not be processed on a daily basis until the FEC resumes normal mail operations. The FEC is not able to receive complaints delivered by courier at this time. During this time, the Commission asks that anyone filing a new enforcement complaint by mail also send an electronic copy of the complaint to EnfComplaint@fec.gov. The Commission encourages the use of electronic signatures and notarizations where permitted by state law. Electronically submitted copies of complaints that otherwise appear to be in order will be deemed received on the date the copy was electronically received by staff. Complaints that are filed only by mail will be deemed received when actually received by OGC staff, subject to mail processing delays.

A complaint must comply with certain requirements. It must:

  • Provide the full name and address of the person filing the complaint (called the complainant); and
  • Be signed, sworn to and notarized. This means that the notary public’s certificate must say “…signed and sworn to before me…,” or words that connote the complaint was affirmed by the complainant, (such as “under penalty of perjury”).

Furthermore, in order for a complaint to be considered complete and proper, it should:

  • Clearly recite the facts that show specific violations under the Commission’s jurisdiction (citations to the law and regulations are not necessary);
  • Clearly identify each person, committee or group that is alleged to have committed a violation (called the respondent);
  • Include any documentation supporting the allegations, if available; and
  • Differentiate between statements based on the complainant’s (the person who files the complaint) personal knowledge and those based on information and belief. Statements not based on personal knowledge should identify the source of the information.

For additional information, please visit our website on how to file a complaint.

We hope this information is helpful. If you have any additional questions about federal campaign finance law, please contact us at 1-800-424-9530 (press #6 when prompted).

Information Division
Federal Election Commission

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