18 U.S. Code § 603. Making political contributions

It shall be unlawful for an officer or employee of the United States or any department or agency thereof, or a person receiving any salary or compensation for services from money derived from the Treasury of the United States, to make any contribution within the meaning of section 301(8) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to any other such officer, employee or person or to any Senator or Representative in, or Delegate or Resident Commissioner to, the Congress, if the person receiving such contribution is the employer or employing authority of the person making the contribution. Any person who violates this section shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
For purposes of this section, a contribution to an authorized committee as defined in section 302(e)(1) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 shall be considered a contribution to the individual who has authorized such committee.
The prohibition in subsection (a) shall not apply to any activity of an employee (as defined in section 7322(1) of title 5) or any individual employed in or under the United States Postal Service or the Postal Regulatory Commission, unless that activity is prohibited by section 7323 or 7324 of such title.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 722; Oct. 31, 1951, ch. 655, § 20(b), 65 Stat. 718; Pub. L. 96–187, title II, § 201(a)(4), Jan. 8, 1980, 93 Stat. 1367; Pub. L. 103–94, § 4(b), Oct. 6, 1993, 107 Stat. 1005; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, § 330016(1)(K), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147; Pub. L. 109–435, title VI, § 604(f), Dec. 20, 2006, 120 Stat. 3242.)
Historical and Revision Notes

Based on title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., §§ 209, 212 (Mar. 4, 1909, ch. 321, §§ 119, 122, 35 Stat. 1110).

This section consolidates sections 209 and 212 of title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., without change of substance.

To eliminate ambiguity resulting from use of identical words in reference “officer or employee of the United States mentioned in section 208 of this title” as those appearing in section 208 of title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., now section 602 of this title, words “person mentioned in section 602 of this title” were inserted.

Words “from any such person” were inserted after “purpose”, so as to make it clear that the section does not embrace State employees in its provisions. Some Federal agencies are located in State buildings occupied by State employees.

The punishment provision was derived from section 212 of title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed. (See reviser’s note under section 602 of this title.)

Minor changes were made in phraseology.

References in Text

Section 301(8) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, referred to in subsec. (a), is classified to section 30101(8) of Title 52, Voting and Elections.

Section 302(e)(1) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, referred to in subsec. (b), is classified to section 30102(e)(1) of Title 52.


2006—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 109–435 substituted “Postal Regulatory Commission” for “Postal Rate Commission”.

1994—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 103–322 substituted “fined under this title” for “fined not more than $5,000”.

1993—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 103–94 added subsec. (c).

1980—Pub. L. 96–187 substituted provisions relating to the making of political contributions for provisions relating to the place of solicitation. See section 607 of this title.

1951—Act Oct. 31, 1951, struck out “from any such person” after “purpose”.

Effective Date of 1993 Amendment; Savings Provision

Amendment by Pub. L. 103–94 effective 120 days after Oct. 6, 1993, but not to release or extinguish any penalty, forfeiture, or liability incurred under amended provision, which is to be treated as remaining in force for purpose of sustaining any proper proceeding or action for enforcement of that penalty, forfeiture, or liability, and no provision of Pub. L. 103–94 to affect any proceedings with respect to which charges were filed on or before 120 days after Oct. 6, 1993, with orders to be issued in such proceedings and appeals taken therefrom as if Pub. L. 103–94 had not been enacted, see section 12 of Pub. L. 103–94, set out as an Effective Date; Savings Provision note under section 7321 of Title 5, Government Organization and Employees.

Effective Date of 1980 Amendment

Amended by Pub. L. 96–187 effective Jan. 8, 1980, see section 301(a) of Pub. L. 96–187, set out as a note under section 30101 of Title 52, Voting and Elections.