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FEC v. Liberal Party Federal Campaign Committee


Failing to resolve a complaint through the informal conciliation process mandated by the law (2 U.S.C. §437g(a)(4)(A)(i)), the FEC filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (Civil Action 84-CIV 5552). The Commission petitioned the court to:

  • Find that the Liberal Party Federal Campaign Committee (the Liberal Party Committee) violated 2 U.S.C. §441a(a)(1)(A) by making excessive contributions to the 1980 National Unity Campaign for John B. Anderson, Mr. Anderson's principal campaign committee for his 1980 Presidential general election campaign;
  • Order the Liberal Party Committee to amend its reports to reflect in-kind contributions of $14,149 to the Anderson campaign;
  • Order the Liberal Party Committee to pay a $5,000 civil penalty or an amount equal to 100 percent of any contributions or expenditures resulting from its violations; and
  • Enjoin the Liberal Party Committee (or any of its agents or successors) from further violations of the election law.

On November 13, 1984, the court entered a default judgment against the Committee. Under the court order, within 30 days of the court's final judgment, the Liberal Party Federal Campaign Committee had to amend its reports and pay a $5,000 civil penalty to the U.S. Treasury. On June 25, 1985, the district court entered an order finding the Liberal Party Committee in civil contempt of its November 13 order. The court ordered that, if the Liberal Party Committee had not fully complied with the November 13 order by July 1, 1985, it would be required to pay a fine of $500 per day until compliance was completed.

Source:   FEC Record March 1985; October 1984. FEC v. Liberal Party Federal Campaign Committee, No. 84-Civ. 5552 (S.D.N.Y. June 25, 1985 contempt).