2 U.S. Code § 441a - Limitations on contributions and expenditures

(a) Dollar limits on contributions
(1) Except as provided in subsection (i) of this section and section 441a–1 of this title, no person shall make contributions—
(A) to any candidate and his authorized political committees with respect to any election for Federal office which, in the aggregate, exceed $2,000;
(B) to the political committees established and maintained by a national political party, which are not the authorized political committees of any candidate, in any calendar year which, in the aggregate, exceed $25,000;
(C) to any other political committee (other than a committee described in subparagraph (D)) in any calendar year which, in the aggregate, exceed $5,000; or
(D) to a political committee established and maintained by a State committee of a political party in any calendar year which, in the aggregate, exceed $10,000.
(2) No multicandidate political committee shall make contributions—
(A) to any candidate and his authorized political committees with respect to any election for Federal office which, in the aggregate, exceed $5,000;
(B) to the political committees established and maintained by a national political party, which are not the authorized political committees of any candidate, in any calendar year, which, in the aggregate, exceed $15,000; or
(C) to any other political committee in any calendar year which, in the aggregate, exceed $5,000.
(3) During the period which begins on January 1 of an odd-numbered year and ends on December 31 of the next even-numbered year, no individual may make contributions aggregating more than—
(A) $37,500, in the case of contributions to candidates and the authorized committees of candidates;
(B) $57,500, in the case of any other contributions, of which not more than $37,500 may be attributable to contributions to political committees which are not political committees of national political parties.
(4) The limitations on contributions contained in paragraphs (1) and (2) do not apply to transfers between and among political committees which are national, State, district, or local committees (including any subordinate committee thereof) of the same political party. For purposes of paragraph (2), the term “multicandidate political committee” means a political committee which has been registered under section 433 of this title for a period of not less than 6 months, which has received contributions from more than 50 persons, and, except for any State political party organization, has made contributions to 5 or more candidates for Federal office.
(5) For purposes of the limitations provided by paragraph (1) and paragraph (2), all contributions made by political committees established or financed or maintained or controlled by any corporation, labor organization, or any other person, including any parent, subsidiary, branch, division, department, or local unit of such corporation, labor organization, or any other person, or by any group of such persons, shall be considered to have been made by a single political committee, except that
(A) nothing in this sentence shall limit transfers between political committees of funds raised through joint fund raising efforts;
(B) for purposes of the limitations provided by paragraph (1) and paragraph (2) all contributions made by a single political committee established or financed or maintained or controlled by a national committee of a political party and by a single political committee established or financed or maintained or controlled by the State committee of a political party shall not be considered to have been made by a single political committee; and
(C) nothing in this section shall limit the transfer of funds between the principal campaign committee of a candidate seeking nomination or election to a Federal office and the principal campaign committee of that candidate for nomination or election to another Federal office if
(i) such transfer is not made when the candidate is actively seeking nomination or election to both such offices;
(ii) the limitations contained in this Act on contributions by persons are not exceeded by such transfer; and
(iii) the candidate has not elected to receive any funds under chapter 95 or chapter 96 of title 26. In any case in which a corporation and any of its subsidiaries, branches, divisions, departments, or local units, or a labor organization and any of its subsidiaries, branches, divisions, departments, or local units establish or finance or maintain or control more than one separate segregated fund, all such separate segregated funds shall be treated as a single separate segregated fund for purposes of the limitations provided by paragraph (1) and paragraph (2).
(6) The limitations on contributions to a candidate imposed by paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection shall apply separately with respect to each election, except that all elections held in any calendar year for the office of President of the United States (except a general election for such office) shall be considered to be one election.
(7) For purposes of this subsection—
(A) contributions to a named candidate made to any political committee authorized by such candidate to accept contributions on his behalf shall be considered to be contributions made to such candidate;
(B)
(i) expenditures made by any person in cooperation, consultation, or concert, with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, his authorized political committees, or their agents, shall be considered to be a contribution to such candidate;
(ii) expenditures made by any person (other than a candidate or candidate’s authorized committee) in cooperation, consultation, or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a national, State, or local committee of a political party, shall be considered to be contributions made to such party committee; and
(iii) the financing by any person of the dissemination, distribution, or republication, in whole or in part, of any broadcast or any written, graphic, or other form of campaign materials prepared by the candidate, his campaign committees, or their authorized agents shall be considered to be an expenditure for purposes of this paragraph; and  [1]
(C) if—
(i) any person makes, or contracts to make, any disbursement for any electioneering communication (within the meaning of section 434 (f)(3) of this title); and
(ii) such disbursement is coordinated with a candidate or an authorized committee of such candidate, a Federal, State, or local political party or committee thereof, or an agent or official of any such candidate, party, or committee;
such disbursement or contracting shall be treated as a contribution to the candidate supported by the electioneering communication or that candidate’s party and as an expenditure by that candidate or that candidate’s party; and
(D) contributions made to or for the benefit of any candidate nominated by a political party for election to the office of Vice President of the United States shall be considered to be contributions made to or for the benefit of the candidate of such party for election to the office of President of the United States.
(8) For purposes of the limitations imposed by this section, all contributions made by a person, either directly or indirectly, on behalf of a particular candidate, including contributions which are in any way earmarked or otherwise directed through an intermediary or conduit to such candidate, shall be treated as contributions from such person to such candidate. The intermediary or conduit shall report the original source and the intended recipient of such contribution to the Commission and to the intended recipient.
(b) Dollar limits on expenditures by candidates for office of President of United States
(1) No candidate for the office of President of the United States who is eligible under section 9003 of title 26 (relating to condition for eligibility for payments) or under section 9033 of title 26 (relating to eligibility for payments) to receive payments from the Secretary of the Treasury may make expenditures in excess of—
(A) $10,000,000, in the case of a campaign for nomination for election to such office, except the aggregate of expenditures under this subparagraph in any one State shall not exceed the greater of 16 cents multiplied by the voting age population of the State (as certified under subsection (e) of this section), or $200,000; or
(B) $20,000,000 in the case of a campaign for election to such office.
(2) For purposes of this subsection—
(A) expenditures made by or on behalf of any candidate nominated by a political party for election to the office of Vice President of the United States shall be considered to be expenditures made by or on behalf of the candidate of such party for election to the office of President of the United States; and
(B) an expenditure is made on behalf of a candidate, including a vice presidential candidate, if it is made by—
(i) an authorized committee or any other agent of the candidate for purposes of making any expenditure; or
(ii) any person authorized or requested by the candidate, an authorized committee of the candidate, or an agent of the candidate, to make the expenditure.
(c) Increases on limits based on increases in price index
(1)
(A) At the beginning of each calendar year (commencing in 1976), as there become available necessary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the Department of Labor, the Secretary of Labor shall certify to the Commission and publish in the Federal Register the percent difference between the price index for the 12 months preceding the beginning of such calendar year and the price index for the base period.
(B) Except as provided in subparagraph (C), in any calendar year after 2002—
(i) a limitation established by subsections (a)(1)(A), (a)(1)(B), (a)(3), (b), (d), or (h) of this section shall be increased by the percent difference determined under subparagraph (A);
(ii) each amount so increased shall remain in effect for the calendar year; and
(iii) if any amount after adjustment under clause (i) is not a multiple of $100, such amount shall be rounded to the nearest multiple of $100.
(C) In the case of limitations under subsections (a)(1)(A), (a)(1)(B), (a)(3), and (h) of this section, increases shall only be made in odd-numbered years and such increases shall remain in effect for the 2-year period beginning on the first day following the date of the last general election in the year preceding the year in which the amount is increased and ending on the date of the next general election.
(2) For purposes of paragraph (1)—
(A) the term “price index” means the average over a calendar year of the Consumer Price Index (all items—United States city average) published monthly by the Bureau of Labor Statistics; and
(B) the term “base period” means—
(i) for purposes of subsections (b) and (d) of this section, calendar year 1974; and
(ii) for purposes of subsections (a)(1)(A), (a)(1)(B), (a)(3), and (h) of this section, calendar year 2001.
(d) Expenditures by national committee, State committee, or subordinate committee of State committee in connection with general election campaign of candidates for Federal office
(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law with respect to limitations on expenditures or limitations on contributions, the national committee of a political party and a State committee of a political party, including any subordinate committee of a State committee, may make expenditures in connection with the general election campaign of candidates for Federal office, subject to the limitations contained in paragraphs (2), (3), and (4) of this subsection.
(2) The national committee of a political party may not make any expenditure in connection with the general election campaign of any candidate for President of the United States who is affiliated with such party which exceeds an amount equal to 2 cents multiplied by the voting age population of the United States (as certified under subsection (e) of this section). Any expenditure under this paragraph shall be in addition to any expenditure by a national committee of a political party serving as the principal campaign committee of a candidate for the office of President of the United States.
(3) The national committee of a political party, or a State committee of a political party, including any subordinate committee of a State committee, may not make any expenditure in connection with the general election campaign of a candidate for Federal office in a State who is affiliated with such party which exceeds—
(A) in the case of a candidate for election to the office of Senator, or of Representative from a State which is entitled to only one Representative, the greater of—
(i) 2 cents multiplied by the voting age population of the State (as certified under subsection (e) of this section); or
(ii) $20,000; and
(B) in the case of a candidate for election to the office of Representative, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner in any other State, $10,000.
(4) Independent versus coordinated expenditures by party.—
(A) In general.— On or after the date on which a political party nominates a candidate, no committee of the political party may make—
(i) any coordinated expenditure under this subsection with respect to the candidate during the election cycle at any time after it makes any independent expenditure (as defined in section 431 (17) of this title) with respect to the candidate during the election cycle; or
(ii) any independent expenditure (as defined in section 431 (17) of this title) with respect to the candidate during the election cycle at any time after it makes any coordinated expenditure under this subsection with respect to the candidate during the election cycle.
(B) Application.— For purposes of this paragraph, all political committees established and maintained by a national political party (including all congressional campaign committees) and all political committees established and maintained by a State political party (including any subordinate committee of a State committee) shall be considered to be a single political committee.
(C) Transfers.— A committee of a political party that makes coordinated expenditures under this subsection with respect to a candidate shall not, during an election cycle, transfer any funds to, assign authority to make coordinated expenditures under this subsection to, or receive a transfer of funds from, a committee of the political party that has made or intends to make an independent expenditure with respect to the candidate.
(e) Certification and publication of estimated voting age population
During the first week of January 1975, and every subsequent year, the Secretary of Commerce shall certify to the Commission and publish in the Federal Register an estimate of the voting age population of the United States, of each State, and of each congressional district as of the first day of July next preceding the date of certification. The term “voting age population” means resident population, 18 years of age or older.
(f) Prohibited contributions and expenditures
No candidate or political committee shall knowingly accept any contribution or make any expenditure in violation of the provisions of this section. No officer or employee of a political committee shall knowingly accept a contribution made for the benefit or use of a candidate, or knowingly make any expenditure on behalf of a candidate, in violation of any limitation imposed on contributions and expenditures under this section.
(g) Attribution of multi-State expenditures to candidate’s expenditure limitation in each State
The Commission shall prescribe rules under which any expenditure by a candidate for presidential nominations for use in 2 or more States shall be attributed to such candidate’s expenditure limitation in each such State, based on the voting age population in such State which can reasonably be expected to be influenced by such expenditure.
(h) Senatorial candidates
Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, amounts totaling not more than $35,000 may be contributed to a candidate for nomination for election, or for election, to the United States Senate during the year in which an election is held in which he is such a candidate, by the Republican or Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, or the national committee of a political party, or any combination of such committees.
(i) Increased limit to allow response to expenditures from personal funds
(1) Increase
(A) In general
Subject to paragraph (2), if the opposition personal funds amount with respect to a candidate for election to the office of Senator exceeds the threshold amount, the limit under subsection (a)(1)(A) of this section (in this subsection referred to as the “applicable limit”) with respect to that candidate shall be the increased limit.
(B) Threshold amount
(i) State-by-State competitive and fair campaign formula In this subsection, the threshold amount with respect to an election cycle of a candidate described in subparagraph (A) is an amount equal to the sum of—
(I) $150,000; and
(II) $0.04 multiplied by the voting age population.
(ii) Voting age population In this subparagraph, the term “voting age population” means in the case of a candidate for the office of Senator, the voting age population of the State of the candidate (as certified under subsection (e) of this section).
(C) Increased limit
Except as provided in clause (ii), for purposes of subparagraph (A), if the opposition personal funds amount is over—
(i) 2 times the threshold amount, but not over 4 times that amount—
(I) the increased limit shall be 3 times the applicable limit; and
(II) the limit under subsection (a)(3) of this section shall not apply with respect to any contribution made with respect to a candidate if such contribution is made under the increased limit of subparagraph (A) during a period in which the candidate may accept such a contribution;
(ii) 4 times the threshold amount, but not over 10 times that amount—
(I) the increased limit shall be 6 times the applicable limit; and
(II) the limit under subsection (a)(3) of this section shall not apply with respect to any contribution made with respect to a candidate if such contribution is made under the increased limit of subparagraph (A) during a period in which the candidate may accept such a contribution; and
(iii) 10 times the threshold amount—
(I) the increased limit shall be 6 times the applicable limit;
(II) the limit under subsection (a)(3) of this section shall not apply with respect to any contribution made with respect to a candidate if such contribution is made under the increased limit of subparagraph (A) during a period in which the candidate may accept such a contribution; and
(III) the limits under subsection (d) of this section with respect to any expenditure by a State or national committee of a political party shall not apply.
(D) Opposition personal funds amount
The opposition personal funds amount is an amount equal to the excess (if any) of—
(i) the greatest aggregate amount of expenditures from personal funds (as defined in section 434 (a)(6)(B) of this title) that an opposing candidate in the same election makes; over
(ii) the aggregate amount of expenditures from personal funds made by the candidate with respect to the election.
(E) Special rule for candidate’s campaign funds
(i) In general For purposes of determining the aggregate amount of expenditures from personal funds under subparagraph (D)(ii), such amount shall include the gross receipts advantage of the candidate’s authorized committee.
(ii) Gross receipts advantage For purposes of clause (i), the term “gross receipts advantage” means the excess, if any, of—
(I) the aggregate amount of 50 percent of gross receipts of a candidate’s authorized committee during any election cycle (not including contributions from personal funds of the candidate) that may be expended in connection with the election, as determined on June 30 and December 31 of the year preceding the year in which a general election is held, over
(II) the aggregate amount of 50 percent of gross receipts of the opposing candidate’s authorized committee during any election cycle (not including contributions from personal funds of the candidate) that may be expended in connection with the election, as determined on June 30 and December 31 of the year preceding the year in which a general election is held.
(2) Time to accept contributions under increased limit
(A) In general
Subject to subparagraph (B), a candidate and the candidate’s authorized committee shall not accept any contribution, and a party committee shall not make any expenditure, under the increased limit under paragraph (1)—
(i) until the candidate has received notification of the opposition personal funds amount under section 434 (a)(6)(B) of this title; and
(ii) to the extent that such contribution, when added to the aggregate amount of contributions previously accepted and party expenditures previously made under the increased limits under this subsection for the election cycle, exceeds 110 percent of the opposition personal funds amount.
(B) Effect of withdrawal of an opposing candidate
A candidate and a candidate’s authorized committee shall not accept any contribution and a party shall not make any expenditure under the increased limit after the date on which an opposing candidate ceases to be a candidate to the extent that the amount of such increased limit is attributable to such an opposing candidate.
(3) Disposal of excess contributions
(A) In general
The aggregate amount of contributions accepted by a candidate or a candidate’s authorized committee under the increased limit under paragraph (1) and not otherwise expended in connection with the election with respect to which such contributions relate shall, not later than 50 days after the date of such election, be used in the manner described in subparagraph (B).
(B) Return to contributors
A candidate or a candidate’s authorized committee shall return the excess contribution to the person who made the contribution.
(j) Limitation on repayment of personal loans
Any candidate who incurs personal loans made after the effective date of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 in connection with the candidate’s campaign for election shall not repay (directly or indirectly), to the extent such loans exceed $250,000, such loans from any contributions made to such candidate or any authorized committee of such candidate after the date of such election.


[1]  So in original. The word “and” probably should not appear.

Source

(Pub. L. 92–225, title III, § 315, formerly § 320, as added Pub. L. 94–283, title I, § 112(2),May 11, 1976, 90 Stat. 486; renumbered § 315,Pub. L. 96–187, title I, § 105(5),Jan. 8, 1980, 93 Stat. 1354; amended Pub. L. 99–514, § 2,Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2095; Pub. L. 107–155, title I, § 102, title II, §§ 202, 213, 214 (a), title III, §§ 304(a), 307(a)–(d), 316, 319(b), Mar. 27, 2002, 116 Stat. 86, 90, 94, 97, 102, 103, 108, 112.)
References in Text

This Act, referred to in subsecs. (a)(5) and (h), means the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended, as defined by section 431 of this title.
For effective date of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002, referred to in subsec. (j), see section 402 ofPub. L. 107–155, set out as an Effective Date of 2002 Amendment; Regulations note under section 431 of this title.
Constitutionality

For information regarding constitutionality of certain provisions of section 315 ofPub. L. 92–225, as added by section 112(2) ofPub. L. 94–283and amended by section 213 ofPub. L. 107–155, see Congressional Research Service, The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation, Appendix 1, Acts of Congress Held Unconstitutional in Whole or in Part by the Supreme Court of the United States.
Prior Provisions

A prior section 315 ofPub. L. 92–225was renumbered section 311, and is classified to section 438 of this title.
Another prior section 315 ofPub. L. 92–225was renumbered section 310, and is classified to section 437h of this title.
Amendments

2002—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 107–155, §§ 304(a)(1), 319(b), substituted “Except as provided in subsection (i) of this section and section 441a–1 of this title, no person” for “No person” in introductory provisions.
Subsec. (a)(1)(A). Pub. L. 107–155, § 307(a)(1), substituted “$2,000” for “$1,000”.
Subsec. (a)(1)(B). Pub. L. 107–155, §§ 102(1), 307(a)(2), substituted “$25,000;” for “$20,000; or”.
Subsec. (a)(1)(C). Pub. L. 107–155, § 102(2), inserted “(other than a committee described in subparagraph (D))” after “committee” and substituted “; or” for period at end.
Subsec. (a)(1)(D). Pub. L. 107–155, § 102(3), added subpar. (D).
Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 107–155, § 307(b), amended par. (3) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (3) read as follows: “No individual shall make contributions aggregating more than $25,000 in any calendar year. For purposes of this paragraph, any contribution made to a candidate in a year other than the calendar year in which the election is held with respect to which such contribution is made, is considered to be made during the calendar year in which such election is held.”
Subsec. (a)(7)(B)(ii), (iii). Pub. L. 107–155, § 214(a), added cl. (ii) and redesignated former cl. (ii) as (iii).
Subsec. (a)(7)(C), (D). Pub. L. 107–155, § 202, added subpar. (C) and redesignated former subpar. (C) as (D).
Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 107–155, § 307(d)(1), redesignated existing provisions as subpar. (A), struck out at end “Each limitation established by subsection (b) of this section and subsection (d) of this section shall be increased by such percent difference. Each amount so increased shall be the amount in effect for such calendar year.”, and added subpars. (B) and (C).
Subsec. (c)(2)(B). Pub. L. 107–155, § 307(d)(2), substituted “means—” for “means the calendar year 1974” and added cls. (i) and (ii).
Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 107–155, § 213(1), substituted “paragraphs (2), (3), and (4)” for “paragraphs (2) and (3)”.
Subsec. (d)(4). Pub. L. 107–155, § 213(2), added par. (4).
Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 107–155, § 307(c), substituted “$35,000” for “$17,500”.
Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 107–155, § 304(a)(2), added subsec. (i).
Subsec. (i)(1)(E). Pub. L. 107–155, § 316, added subpar. (E).
Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 107–155, § 304(a)(2), added subsec. (j).
1986—Subsecs. (a)(5), (b)(1). Pub. L. 99–514substituted “Internal Revenue Code of 1986” for “Internal Revenue Code of 1954”, which for purposes of codification was translated as “title 26” thus requiring no change in text.
Effective Date of 2002 Amendment

Pub. L. 107–155, title III, § 307(e),Mar. 27, 2002, 116 Stat. 103, provided that: “The amendments made by this section [amending this section] shall apply with respect to contributions made on or after January 1, 2003.”
Amendment by Pub. L. 107–155effective Nov. 6, 2002, except that amendments by sections 102 and 307 of the Act applicable with respect to contributions made on or after Jan. 1, 2003, and amendments by sections 202, 213, 214(a), 304(a), 316, and 319(b) of the Act not applicable with respect to runoff elections, recounts, or election contests resulting from elections held prior to Nov. 6, 2002, see section 402 ofPub. L. 107–155, set out as an Effective Date of 2002 Amendment; Regulations note under section 431 of this title.
Regulations by the Federal Election Commission

Pub. L. 107–155, title II, § 214(c),Mar. 27, 2002, 116 Stat. 95, provided that: “The Federal Election Commission shall promulgate new regulations on coordinated communications paid for by persons other than candidates, authorized committees of candidates, and party committees. The regulations shall not require agreement or formal collaboration to establish coordination. In addition to any subject determined by the Commission, the regulations shall address—
“(1) payments for the republication of campaign materials;
“(2) payments for the use of a common vendor;
“(3) payments for communications directed or made by persons who previously served as an employee of a candidate or a political party; and
“(4) payments for communications made by a person after substantial discussion about the communication with a candidate or a political party.”

This is a list of parts within the Code of Federal Regulations for which this US Code section provides rulemaking authority.

This list is taken from the Parallel Table of Authorities and Rules provided by GPO [Government Printing Office].

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11 CFR - Federal Elections

11 CFR Part 8 - COLLECTION OF ADMINISTRATIVE DEBTS

11 CFR Part 104 - REPORTS BY POLITICAL COMMITTEES AND OTHER PERSONS (2 U.S.C. 434)

11 CFR Part 106 - ALLOCATIONS OF CANDIDATE AND COMMITTEE ACTIVITIES

11 CFR Part 109 - COORDINATED AND INDEPENDENT EXPENDITURES (2 U.S.C. 431(17), 441a(a) AND (d), AND PUB. L. 107-155 SEC. 214(c))

11 CFR Part 110 - CONTRIBUTION AND EXPENDITURE LIMITATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS

11 CFR Part 113 - PERMITTED AND PROHIBITED USES OF CAMPAIGN ACCOUNTS

11 CFR Part 116 - DEBTS OWED BY CANDIDATES AND POLITICAL COMMITTEES

11 CFR Part 300 - NON-FEDERAL FUNDS

11 CFR Part 400

 

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