Political Action Committees (PACs)–What you Need to Know

One of the most common methods for raising money for political parties or candidates is through the use of a political action committee or PAC. While political action committees are often associated with candidates they can be used in correlation with many types of organizations, such as unions and businesses. In addition, a political action committee can also be created in a manner that is not affiliated with any entity.

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Forming a political action committee is an additional way to get involved in politics and advocating for candidates who support causes that are important to you. While political action committees are a popular method for political fundraising, there are very specific guidelines that apply to the formation and management of PACs.

When starting a political action committee, it is imperative for there to be a purpose behind the PAC. Identifying a purpose for the PAC when it is first established will make it much easier for it to be promoted for the purposes of fundraising. The PAC should also have a name that is related to the purpose for which it is founded, making it much easier for potential donors to understand the purpose of the PAC.

One of the most important things about a PAC is that it must be registered with the Federal Election Commission within ten days of starting the PAC. There is an exception for a PAC that is not connected; in that case, the political action committee is not required to register until such time as $1,000 has been distributed within a single calendar year for the purpose of funding a federal election campaign.

When establishing a PAC, it is critical for a treasurer to be named at the time of inception. PACs In A Nutshell

Comprehensive reports must be provided by all political action committees to the Federal Election Commission. This is crucial because specific guidelines apply regarding the regulation of how much money can be donated by a PAC to a campaign.

For more information about PACs, see these Capitol Learning Audio Courses: PAC Management: Advanced PAC Strategy, and PACs in a Nutshell: Political Action Committee Basics.

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