State party committees and their chairs may solicit and direct nonfederal funds to a hybrid PAC’s non-contribution account because it is a “political committee” under the Federal Election Campaign Act (the Act) and Commission regulations.
State Democracy Defenders PAC (SDD PAC) is registered with the Commission as a nonconnected political committee with both contribution and non-contribution accounts (Hybrid PAC). SDD PAC is not established, financed, maintained, or controlled by any state party committee or their agents. SDD PAC’s mission “is to raise funds from donors across the country and donate these funds to state party committee nonfederal accounts—consistent with state campaign finance laws—to facilitate their vital grassroots, pro-democracy work.”
SDD PAC will not accept contributions earmarked for specific state party committees but will itself decide how to spend the funds it receives. SDD PAC will also make monetary and in-kind donations to state and local candidates.
SDD PAC asks if state party committees and their chairs may solicit unlimited funds for SDD PAC’s non-contribution account.
A hybrid PAC may, in addition to making contributions, establish a separate bank account to deposit and withdraw funds raised in unlimited amounts from individuals, corporations, labor organizations and other political committees. A hybrid PAC’s non-contribution account may be used “for the purpose of financing independent expenditures, other advertisements that refer to a Federal candidate, and generic voter drives.”
While state party committees generally may solicit nonfederal funds, Commission regulations prohibit state party officers and agents from soliciting funds for certain tax-exempt organizations. However, the regulations specifically identify federal political committees as one type of organization for which state party committees and their officers may solicit funds. Accordingly, because SDD PAC is a federal political committee, state party committees and their chairs may solicit funds for SDD PAC without regard to the amount limitations or source prohibitions of the Act.
Date issued: August 31, 2022; Length: 6 pages
11 C.F.R. § 100.5
11 C.F.R. § 100.24
Federal election activity
11 C.F.R. § 103.3
Deposit of receipts and disbursements
11 C.F.R. § 104.5
11 C.F.R. § 300.30
11 C.F.R. § 300.37
Prohibitions on fundraising for and donating to certain tax-exempt organizations