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  • FEC Record: Advisory opinions

AO 2023-07: County party committee not affiliated with state party

November 20, 2023

The Upshur County Republican Executive Committee (Upshur County) and the West Virginia Republican Party (State Party) are not affiliated for purposes of the Federal Election Campaign Act’s (the Act) contribution limits.

Under the Act, political committees are “affiliated” if they are established, financed, maintained or controlled by the same organization, person or group of persons. Affiliated committees share limits on contributions made and received.

Local party committees are presumed to be under the direction and control of the state committee—and thus per se affiliated with the state committee—unless they can demonstrate otherwise. In this case, Upshur County was able to demonstrate that:

  1. It has not received funds from the State Party or its affiliates; and
  2. It does not make its contributions in cooperation, consultation, or at the request or suggestion of the State Party or its affiliates.

As a result, the Commission concluded that Upshur County and the State Party are not per se affiliated.

In the absence of per se affiliation, the Commission examines ten circumstantial factors within the context of the overall relationship to determine whether one committee has established, financed, maintained, or controlled the other committee. These factors include: controlling interest; governance; hiring authority; common membership; common officers or employees; former officers or employees; providing the provision of funds or goods; formation; and contribution similarities.

The Commission noted that only two of these factors—governance and hiring authority--weighed in favor of affiliation, and in each case other considerations diminished their significance. Additionally, Upshur County has demonstrated its intention to pursue its own objectives even when those objectives do not align with those of the State Party. The Commission concluded that, on balance, the circumstantial factors indicate that Upshur County and the State Party are not affiliated for the purposes of the Act’s contribution limits.

Date issued: November 16, 2023; Length: 12 pages


11 C.F.R. § 100.5
Political committee

11 C.F.R. § 100.14
State Committee, subordinate committee, district, or local committee

11 C.F.R. § 102.17
Joint fundraising by committees other than separate segregated funds

11 C.F.R. § 110.3
Contribution limitations for affiliated committees and political party committees; transfers


  • Author 
    • David Garr
    • Communications Specialist