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Covington Releases “FEC Year in Review”

February 5, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC, February 5, 2014 — Covington & Burling released its annual report on the state of the Federal Election Commission today in advance of its day-long seminar addressing the growing issues surrounding corporate political activity and compliance.

The report produced by Covington’s election and political law practice group, details the FEC’s most important actions from 2013, as well as relevant court decisions and criminal prosecutions.

“By many measures, 2013 may be the least productive year in the Federal Election Commission’s history,” the 10-page report notes. “But a look-back at what the FEC did not do in 2013 tells a different and more interesting story. Based in part on a reassessment of the criteria for beginning an investigation, and in part on a reinterpretation of substantive law, three FEC Commissioners consistently held that they would no longer support enforcement actions in a number of key areas, including the relationship between candidates and outside spending groups.”

The report will be distributed at Covington’s Corporate Political Activity Compliance Seminar at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center. The seminar features a presentation by Lanny Breuer, former chief of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; Tony Herman, former general counsel of the FEC; and former Senator Jon Kyl.

Other topics addressed in the report include the new, higher standards for complaints; the continued battle over express advocacy; the definition of a political committee; shared staff, republication and coordination; online communications; reporting violations; reimbursed contributions; the enforcement process; and pending campaign finance cases in 2014.

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