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  • FEC Record: Public funding

Convention Funding Eliminated

April 4, 2014

President Barack Obama signed legislation on April 3, 2014, that will end the public funding of presidential nominating conventions.

One of the three components of the presidential public funding program, the convention grants have helped to finance every major party convention since 1976, as well as a minor party convention that qualified for funding in 2000. Under the program, each major party convention committee was entitled to $4 million plus a cost-of-living adjustment ($18.2 million in 2012), and minor parties could qualify for partial funding based on their nominee’s share of the popular vote in the preceding presidential election. Eligible minor parties could supplement their partial funding—up to the amount of the major party grant—with private contributions. In exchange for the public funds, the convention committees agreed to limit spending to the amount of the major party grant, and to undergo an FEC audit after the convention.

Funded by the $3 tax checkoff, the two remaining components of the public funding program provide matching funds to eligible presidential primary candidates and grants to qualified general election nominees.

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  • Author 
    • Alex Knott