News Releases, Media Advisories

For Immediate Release:                                                                                             Contact:  Ron Harris
March 22, 1999                                                                                                                             Sharon Snyder
                                                                                                                                                        Ian Stirton
                                                                                                                                                        Kelly Huff



WASHINGTON – The Federal Election Commission will conduct a public hearing on Wednesday, March 24, on proposed changes to its rules governing publicly financed Presidential primary and general election candidates.

These regulations implement the provisions of the Presidential Election Campaign Fund Act and the Presidential Primary Matching Payment Account Act, which establish eligibility requirements for Presidential candidates seeking public financing, and indicate how funds received under the public financing system may be spent. They also require the Commission to audit publicly financed campaigns and seek repayment where appropriate.

The proposed rulemaking would address various sections in the current regulations, including: coordination between publicly funded Presidential candidates and their political parties; "bright line" distinction between primary and general election expenses; winding-down costs; compliance and fundraising costs; transportation and services provided to the media; and others (see news release December 17, 1998, headlined "Comments Sought On Proposed Public Funding Rule," at The complete text of the proposed rulemaking was published in the Federal Register on December 16, 1998. Deadline for comments was January 29, 1999.

The schedule of witnesses for the March 24 hearing includes:

10 a.m. Kim Hume, Fox News; George Condon, Copley News Service, on behalf of major news organizations covering Presidential campaigns.

11 a.m. Lyn Utrecht, Ryan, Phillips, Utrecht & MacKinnon; Joseph E. Sandler, Sandler & Reiff, on behalf of the Democratic National Committee; Thomas J. Josefiak, Republican National Committee.

2 p.m. David Eisner, America Online Inc.; Trevor Potter, Wiley, Rein & Fielding, on behalf of America Online Inc.

3 p.m. James Bopp, Jr., James Madison Center for Free Speech.

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