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  • Weekly Digests

Week of February 28-March 4, 2022

March 4, 2022

Commission meetings and hearings

No open meetings or executive sessions were scheduled this week.

Advisory Opinions

Draft Advisory Opinion

Advisory Opinion Request 2022-01 (Joan Farr for U.S. Senate) On March 3, the Commission made public a draft advisory opinion. The requestors, authorized committees of a 2022 primary candidate for the U.S. Senate from Oklahoma and Kansas, ask whether their proposal to distribute copies of a book written by the candidate to contributors is permissible under the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (the Act), and Commission regulations.


The Commission made public three closed cases, as follows. For more information, see the case documents in the Enforcement Query System.

MUR 7641

COMPLAINANT: Darin Knepper
RESPONDENT: Facebook, Inc. (Facebook)
SUBJECT: The complaint alleged that Facebook made prohibited in-kind contributions to Beto O’Rourke and Ilhan Omar. The complaint contends that Facebook appended “counterposts” to dispute the accuracy of certain users’ Facebook posts that were critical of these candidates in order to support their campaigns. O’Rourke was a 2020 primary candidate for U.S. President while Omar was a 2020 candidate for Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District.
DISPOSITION: The Commission found no reason to believe that Facebook made prohibited in-kind contributions because the counterposts appeared to reflect commercial considerations and there was no evidence that Facebook coordinated its activities with candidates, and also found no reason to believe that Facebook failed to file independent expenditure reports because the counterposts did not contain express advocacy.

MUR 7806

RESPONDENTS: Cory Gardner for Senate and Lisa Lisker, in her official capacity as Treasurer (the Committee); and Cory Gardner
SUBJECT: The complaint alleged that the Committee aired two television advertisements that included verbal statements by Gardner, a 2020 U.S. Senate candidate from Colorado, approving the communications but failed to include adequately sized images of the candidate supporting those statements. The complaint alleged that the images of the candidate were not clearly identifiable.
DISPOSITION: The Commission exercised its prosecutorial discretion and dismissed the matter. The Commission observed it was unlikely that the public would have been confused as to whether the advertisements were authorized by the candidate.

MUR 7811

COMPLAINANT: Joshua Freedman
RESPONDENT: Reddit, Inc. (Reddit)
SUBJECT: The complaint alleged that Reddit violated the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (the Act), and Commission regulations when it made prohibited in-kind corporate contributions to federal candidates and political committees by removing and suppressing opposing content from its website, pointing to instances where Reddit banned and then reinstated the complainant’s account. The complaint further appeared to allege that unspecified candidates and committees paid Reddit to manipulate content.
DISPOSITION: The Commission found no reason to believe that Reddit violated the Act because the available information did not appear to specify facts to reasonably suggest that it engaged in any activities for the purpose of influencing a federal election or coordinated with any candidate or committee.

Regulations and agency procedures

Rule of Agency Procedure Concerning the Treatment of Foreign State Respondents at the Initiation of the Enforcement Process. On March 3, the Commission published a Rule of Agency Procedure in the Federal Register, effective immediately, that requires the Commission’s Office of General Counsel to notify the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. Department of State at the initiation of the enforcement process when a foreign state has been identified as a respondent to a complaint filed with the Commission.


FEC v. LatPAC, et al. (Case No. 21-6095) On February 25, Defendant Chalin Askew filed an Opposition to Motion for Default Judgment in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

45Committee, Inc. v. FEC (Case No. 22-502). On February 25, Plaintiff filed a Complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia alleging that the Commission arbitrarily and capriciously withheld records concerning an enforcement matter.

Commissioner statements

On March 2, Commissioner Ellen L. Weintraub issued a Statement On the Opportunities Before the D.C. Circuit in the New Models Case To Re-Examine En Banc Its Precedents Regarding ‘Deadlock Deference.’


On February 28, Commissioner Shana M. Broussard participated in a panel discussion at the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, “Elections, Political Participation and Black History Month.”

On March 2, the Commission hosted an FECConnect On Topic session on candidate registration.

Upcoming Commission meetings

March 8 and 10, 2022: The Commission is scheduled to meet in executive session.

March 10, 2022: The Commission is scheduled to hold an open meeting.

March 22, 2022: The Commission is scheduled to meet in executive session.

March 24, 2022: The Commission is scheduled to hold an open meeting.

Upcoming educational programs

March 9 and 16: The Commission will host webinars on independent expenditures.

March 23, 2022: The Commission will host a webinar for candidate committees.

March 30, 2022: The Commission will host FECFile webinars for candidates, PACs, and party committees.

April 6, 2022: The Commission will host a webinar for political party committees.

For more information on upcoming training opportunities, see the Commission’s Trainings page.

Upcoming reporting due dates

March 20: March Monthly Reports are due. For more information, see the 2022 Monthly Reporting schedule.

The Commission has posted filing deadlines for the Minnesota 1st District Special Election. For information on the reporting dates for these elections, refer to the Special Election Report Notice.

Updated Campaign Guide

The Commission recently updated its Campaign Guide for Congressional Candidates and Committees. The new Guide, which replaces the 2014 edition, provides an overall summary of the federal campaign finance laws that apply to candidates for the United States House of Representatives and United States Senate and their campaign committees.

Additional research materials

Contribution Limits. In addition to the current limits, the Commission has posted an archive of contribution limits that were in effect going back to the 1975-1976 election cycles.

2020 Presidential General Election Results and Federal Elections 2018: Election Results for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are available. The data was compiled from the official vote totals published by state election offices.

FEC Notify: Want to be notified by email when campaign finance reports are received by the agency? Sign up here.

Additional research materials about the agency, campaign finance information, and election results are available through the Library section of the Commission website.

The Combined Federal State Disclosure and Election Directory is available. This publication identifies the federal and state agencies responsible for the disclosure of campaign finances, lobbying, personal finances, public financing, candidates on the ballot, election results, spending on state initiatives and other financial filings.

The Presidential Election Campaign Fund Tax Checkoff Chart provides information on balance of the Fund, monthly deposits into the Fund reported by the Department of the Treasury, payments from the Fund as certified by the FEC, and participation rates of taxpayers as reported by the Internal Revenue Service. For more information on the Presidential Public Funding Program, see the Public Funding of Presidential Elections page.

The FEC Record is available as a continuously updated online news source.

Other election-related resources

Videos on protecting U.S. elections. The FBI’s Protected Voices initiative provides videos designed to help political campaigns protect themselves from foreign influence. The 2019 videos offer guidance on ransomware, business email compromise, supply chain, social media literacy, and foreign influence operations. Other videos, released in 2018, include cyber hygiene topics such as social engineering, patching, router hardening, and app and browser safety.

Join the FEC on Twitter and YouTube

Follow @FEC on Twitter to receive the latest information on agency updates, news releases, and weekly activity. Subscribe to our YouTube channel, FECTube: FECConnect on Demand, to watch instructional videos that have been designed to help candidates and committees comply with federal campaign finance laws. Note that the FEC is not currently available through other social media platforms. The use of the agency’s logo, name, and likeness on other media has not been authorized by the FEC.