News Releases, Media Advisories

For Immediate Release:                                                                                             Contact:  Ian Stirton
June 05, 2000                                                                                                                                 Ron Harris
(Corrected release issued June 23, 2000)                                                                                 Sharon Snyder
                                                                                                                                                        Kelly Huff



-- Record Amounts of ‘Soft Money’ Reported --

WASHINGTON – Financial activity for the 15-month period from January 1, 1999, through March 31, 2000, shows the federal accounts of Republican party committees reported raising $179.3 million and the Democratic committees $104 million. While federal receipts for both parties increased approximately 18% over 1997-98 activity, Republican receipts showed a slight decrease of $2.1 million when compared to the same period in 1995-96, the last presidential cycle, and Democratic receipts increased slightly by $.8 million.

Both political parties, however, reported an increase in their congressional campaign committees when compared to the last two election cycles. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee raised $20.8 million, an increase of $8.3 million, or 67%, when compared to the same period in 1997-98. The increase is almost the same when compared to the 1995-96 election cycle. The National Republican Congressional Committee reported receipts of $45.2 million, an increase of $17.1 million, or 61%, when compared to the 1997-98 cycle. However, when compared to the 1995-96 cycle, the increase was only $6.2 million, or 16%.

Contributions from individuals made up the bulk of receipts for both parties. Democratic party committees received $74 million, 71%, of their funds from individuals, while Republicans received $156.3 million, or 87%, from individuals. Democrats received $12.6 million from PACs, while Republicans received $9 million.

Democrats reported cash-on-hand of $31.5 million and debts of $3.7 million at the end of the 15-month cycle, while Republicans had $32.2 million cash-on-hand and debts of $2.3 million.

Record increases in nonfederal, or "soft money,"* activity were reported by both political parties. Republican nonfederal accounts raised $86.4 million, a 48% increase over the same period in the previous cycle, while Democratic nonfederal accounts raised $80.2 million, an 91% increase. When compared to the 1995-96 cycle, the Republicans registered a 93% increase and the Democrats 102%.

Charts attached to this release provide summary data for the financial activities of the Republican and Democratic party committees during the first 15 months of the current election cycle compared to the same period in six previous election cycles. Comparable data on nonfederal party activity is available only back to the 1991-92 cycle. The FEC began requiring national party committees to disclose their nonfederal accounts in January 1991.

This release and the data contained in it are also available on the FEC’s web page at under News Releases or Campaign Finance Reports and Data.

*"Soft money" describes funds raised outside the limitations and prohibitions of the Federal Election Campaign Act. Soft money must be deposited in separate nonfederal accounts and cannot be used in connection with federal elections. To enhance public disclosure, the FEC requires national political party committees to report the sources of receipts to all nonfederal accounts.

(The fifth paragraph on this page contains corrected figures.)

Republican Party Federal Activity

Democratic Party Federal Activity

Republican Party Non-Federal Activity

Democratic Party Non-Federal Activity

Non-Federal Summary