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Campaign Finance Laws

Campaign finance laws govern the amounts of money political candidates or parties may receive from individuals or organizations and the cumulative amounts individuals or organizations can donate. These laws also define who is eligible to make political contributions and what sorts of activities constitute in-kind contributions.


There have been three major periods of campaign finance regulation in the past century in the United States. The first period was the era before the Federal Elections and Campaigns Act of 1971 (FECA) and its subsequent amendments. The second period was the era from 1974 to 2002, when FECA regulated campaigns. The third period is the current era, following the enactment of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA).

Before FECA, campaign finance laws were mainly addressed to particular ...

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