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  • FEC Record: Public funding

Commission declares Gary Johnson eligible to receive federal matching funds (2012)

June 1, 2012

On May 31, 2012, the Commission declared Gary Earl Johnson eligible to receive federal matching funds. Johnson sought and won the Libertarian nomination for president for 2012.

To become eligible for matching funds, candidates must raise a threshold amount of $100,000 by collecting $5,000 in 20 different states in amounts no greater than $250 from any individual. Other requirements to be declared eligible include agreeing to an overall spending limit, abiding by spending limits in each state, using public funds only for legitimate campaign-related expenses, keeping financial records and permitting an extensive campaign audit.

Based on documents filed by Gary Johnson 2012, Inc. on April 27, 2012, contributions from the following states were verified for threshold purposes: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Washington. All of the materials included with this submission may be viewed here. Based on Johnson’s initial threshold submission, the Commission requested on May 25 that the United States Treasury make an initial payment of $100,000 to Johnson’s campaign.

Once declared eligible, campaigns may submit additional contributions for matching funds on the first business day of every month. The maximum amount a primary candidate could receive is currently estimated to be about $22.8 million.

The presidential public funding program is financed through the $3 check-off that appears on individual income tax returns. The program has three elements: grants to parties to help fund their nominating conventions, grants available to nominees to pay for the general election campaign and matching payments to participating candidates during the primary campaign.