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For Immediate Release Contact:  Judith Ingram
December 6, 2012 Julia Queen
  Christian Hilland

FEC APPROVES TWO ADVISORY OPINIONS, A NOTICE OF PROPOSED RULEMAKING ON LIMITED LIABILITY PARTNERSHIPS, A PROPOSED FINAL AUDIT REPORT AND AN AUDIT DIVISION RECOMMENDATION MEMORANDUM; DISCUSSES TWO ADVISORY OPINION REQUESTS

WASHINGTON –The Federal Election Commission today approved two advisory opinions, a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Limited Liability Partnerships, a Proposed Final Audit Report and voted on an Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum. The Commission also discussed but did not vote on two additional advisory opinion requests.

Advisory Opinion Request 2012-37 (Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A.). The Commission discussed two draft Advisory Opinions, based on a request from Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., but did not vote on either draft. Yamaha asks whether it may form a separate segregated fund and, if so, whether it may solicit contributions from the executive and administrative personnel of certain dealers and service centers under the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended, (the Act) and Commission regulations. During the discussion, the Commission heard from counsel on behalf of the requestor. The Commission will accept written comments on the drafts until noon (Eastern Time) on December 19, 2012, and shall issue a response by January 4, 2013.

Advisory Opinion Request 2012-35 (Global Transaction Services Group, Inc.). The Commission discussed two drafts but did not vote on an advisory opinion request from Global Transaction Services Group, Inc. The requestor asks whether its proposed method of processing small-dollar electronic credit and debit card contributions to candidates initiated via text messaging is permissible under the Act and Commission regulations. During the discussion, the Commission heard from the President and Chief Executive Officer of Global Transaction Services Group, Inc. The Commission will accept written comments on the drafts until noon on December 19, 2012, and shall issue a response by December 24, 2012.

Advisory Opinion 2012-36 (Green Party of Connecticut). The Commission concluded that the Green Party of Connecticut (GPC) qualifies as a State party committee of a political party under the Act and Commission regulations. GPC qualifies as a State party committee because: (1) the Green Party of the United States (GPUS) qualifies as a political party; 2) the GPC is part of the official GPUS structure; and 3) the GPC is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the GPUS at the State level.

Advisory Opinion 2012-34 (Freedom PAC and Friends of Mike H). The Commission concluded that Friends of Mike H, an authorized committee of former federal candidate Mike Haridopolos, may use campaign funds raised for Mr. Haridopolos' primary election to make a contribution of $10,000 or more to Freedom PAC, an independent expenditure-only committee. During the meeting, counsel on behalf of the requestor was present and available for discussion.

Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Limited Liability Partnerships. The Commission approved a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking concerning the treatment of limited liability partnerships (LLPs) for purposes of the Act and Commission regulations. The Commission is considering treating all LLPs that have opted for federal corporate tax treatment pursuant to the Internal Revenue Service's "check the box" provisions as corporations. The Commission requests comments on these proposed new rules. Comments will be due 60 days after publication of the Notice in the Federal Register.

Proposed Final Audit Report on the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party. The Commission approved the Proposed Final Audit Report on the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party covering campaign finance activity between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2008. The Audit Report contains one finding related to the overfunding of federal accounts by non-federal accounts and one additional issue related to the misstatement of financial activity.

Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum on McCain-Palin 2008, Inc. and McCain-Palin Compliance Fund, Inc.  The Commission discussed, but did not approve by the required four affirmative votes, the first recommended finding of the Audit Division Recommendation Memorandum for McCain-Palin 2008, Inc. and McCain-Palin Compliance Fund, Inc. relating to campaign travel and billing for the press during the period of March 24, 2008-December 31, 2008.  The Commission approved the second recommended finding of the Recommendation Memorandum relating to the issue of failing to file 48-hour notices.   Federal law requires the Commission to audit every political committee established by a presidential candidate, which receives general funds for the general campaign.  The Audit Division will prepare the Proposed Final Audit Report, which will incorporate changes based on the discussion at today’s open meeting, within 30 days.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces federal campaign finance laws. The FEC has jurisdiction over the financing of campaigns for the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, the Presidency and the Vice Presidency. Established in 1975, the FEC is composed of six Commissioners who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

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