Political Advertising Law
IMPACT OF POLITICAL ADVERTISING LAW ON ELECTION 2008
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DISTRICT COURT RULING IN CCL CASE
On September 27, 2006, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted partial motions to dismiss and for judgment on the pleadings. And that court dismissed all other CCL claims as moot.
CCL filed a complaint on April 3, 2006 with the same federal district court. This complaint asked the court to find the statutes and regulations concerning electioneering communications to be unconstitutional as applied to broadcast ads that CCL argued are "grassroots lobbying." CCL also sought both preliminary and permanent injunctions enjoining FEC from enforcing these regulations against CCL as well as attorneys' fees. CCL contended that it's constitutionally entitled to pay for its planned ads with its general corporate funds.
The federal district court dismissed CCL's request for a permanent injunction to halt FEC from applying its Electioneering Communications rules to CCL's proposed radio ad since the Senate vote on the legislation discussed in the ad rendered the issue moot.
DENIAL OF PRELMINARY INJUNCTION IN CCL CASE
On May 9, 2006, the district court also denied CCL's motion for a preliminary injunction.
The district court pointed out that the Supreme Court in McConnell v. FEC found that the government had a compelling interest to limit the expenditure of corporate treasury funds via the electioneering communication provision contained in the BCRA. Additionally, the district court cited McConnell for the proposition that the Electioneering Communication provision does not ban expression, but requires that corporations must fund certain ads through their separate segregated funds.
Accordingly, the district court found that CCL did not establish the likelihood of irreparable harm; thus granting a preliminary injunction would harm the public's--and FEC's--interest by preventing the enforcement of an Act of Congress.
LAWYER'S REFERENCE SERVICE
The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002.
Christian Civic League of Maine, Inc. v. FEC, 529 U.S. 05-1447 (October 2, 2006).
Federal Election Commission Record
Federal Election Commission Record, May 2006, page 7, et seq.
Federal Election Commission Record, June 2006, page 3, et seq.
Federal Election Commission Record, November 2006, page 3, et seq.
McConnell v. FEC, 540 U.S. 93, 206 (2003).
Wisconsin Right to Life v. FEC, 126 S.Ct. 1016, 1018 (2006).)
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Check back here from time to time as future articles will examine political advertising laws and their impact of our election process, particularly on the 2008 presidential election cycle. Click here for our article examining the Impact of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002.
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