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house Bill H.R. 429

Should Candidates and Political Campaigns Disclose Donations Over $1,000 Within 48 Hours?

Argument in favor

The technology to support real-time disclosure of political campaign contributions is already in place, thanks to electronic filing. There’s no reason for candidates and committees to not disclose their donors on a real-time basis, rather than waiting for the end of each quarter.

John's Opinion
···
03/20/2019
We need to be able to see who is giving how much to whom.
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Adam's Opinion
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03/20/2019
I’d like faster disclosure, but 48 hours may be a little too often. Every week on Wednesday sounds good to me, though.
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Lori's Opinion
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03/20/2019
We need transparency in our elections. Americans need to know who is behind candidates and what they expect in return.
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Argument opposed

Candidates and political campaigns already have to report all donations over $1,000 to the FEC or Secretary of State, as appropriate. While there’s some delay in reporting with quarterly deadlines, it’s not significant enough to justify requiring real-time disclosure of donations over $1,000.

operaman's Opinion
···
03/20/2019
Who I donate to or how much I donate are my business ONLY, not some opposition political party or government bureaucracy.
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Jesse's Opinion
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03/20/2019
This is a pure invasion of privacy and a way to open up the leftist mob to attack those who vote the opposition. It can hurt those who work in certain fields and business. Do you want to know who your friends, family, and colleagues vote for? Will you show bias toward them? This is another way to divide us further in the guise of transparency.. The most you can donate is $5,000 as a person or a corporate PAC anyway. The system already allows people to self fund their campaigns so most of the time the rich are the only ones who can afford to run. You want to make it fair? Cap the funding equally to both sides and make all policy debates live and FREE for local and national candidates..
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Trent's Opinion
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03/20/2019
No. Make it $50,000. $1000 dollars is too low. They just have dinners then that are $2800 a plate. Kamala. At any rate this can’t be stopped. The Clintons went from literally stealing White House silverware to having 100’s of millions. Let’s see if we can stop $200 million and work our way down to $1000.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Administration
    IntroducedJanuary 10th, 2019

What is House Bill H.R. 429?

This bill — the Real Time Transparency Act of 2019 — would require real-time disclosure of donations over $1,000 to candidates and committees within 48 hours.

This bill would amend the Federal Elections Campaign Act of 1971 to require political campaigns to:

  • Submit the contributor’s identification, the date of the donation, and the amount of donations over $1,000;
  • Submit information about any additional contributions over $1,000 within the same calendar year from the same donor to the Federal Election Commission (FEC); and
  • Submit the above information within 48 hours of the contribution’s receipt.

Impact

Political donors; political campaigns; PACs; and the FEC.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 429

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthRep. Brad Schneider (D-IL) introduced this bill to increase campaign finance transparency by requiring real-time disclosure of donations over $1,000 to candidates and committees within 48 hours:

“Sunlight is often the best disinfectant, and the American people have a right to know who is donating to political candidates and when it happens. Electronic filing makes real-time disclosure of political donations easy and illuminating, but our current system of quarterly disclosures is behind the times. I urge my colleagues to join me updating these requirements to the 21st Century and bringing needed transparency to money in our elections.”

Common Cause, a non-partisan government watchdog group, supports this bill. Its director of legislative affairs, Aaron Scherb, says:

“With hundreds of millions of dollars in secret money spent in recent elections, Americans deserve to know who is trying to influence their voices and their votes. We commend Congressman Schneider for introducing the Real-Time Transparency Act, a common sense bill that would immediately shine a light on political spending.”

When Sen. Angus King (I-ME) introduced a bill similar to this one in 2014, a coalition of 17 organizations, including Demos, the Campaign Legal Center, Democracy 21, and Demos, expressed their support for the bill in a joint letter to the Senate Committee on Rules & Administration:

“We [signing organizations] have many different priorities, but we all agree that the unprecedented 2014 Supreme Court decision, McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, makes it imperative that a system of full, real-time transparency of money in politics be firmly established… [W]e are particularly alarmed that there is no adequate disclosure system in place so that the public can know who is doling out huge contributions in near real time and whether these large donations are buying undue influence over our elected officials. In this day and age of the Internet, there is no excuse for not having real time disclosure of large contributions to candidates and committees. On-line filing by political committees is easy and inexpensive, and the on-line filing programs are already in place. Even now some political committees are required to file large campaign expenditures within 48 hours in the last few weeks of an election, which has proved to be of little burden to the filers… We have the means, we have the technology, to make real time disclosure a reality. But to get there, Congress must make it so.”

In 2014, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) argued that restrictions on campaign contributions infringe on First Amendment rights, saying, “All people, individually and as groups, have every right to make their views known.” This, according to Sen. Roberts, includes being able to spend money in political races as a person or organization sees fit. Sen. Roberts added, “We have nothing to fear from a free marketplace of ideas. We do, however, need to fear a government empowered to investigate its own citizens for exercising their rights."

This bill has one cosponsor, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR).

Bills similar to this one have been introduced by various members of Congress since 2014. In the 113th Congress, then-Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX) introduced the Real Time Transparency Act of 2014 to require 48-hour notice to the FEC of cumulative contributions of $1,000 or more from any contributor during a calendar year. Then-Rep-O’Rourke’s bill didn’t receive a committee vote. In the 114th Congress, Rep. O’Rourke reintroduced his bill, and it again failed to receive a committee vote. In the same Congress, Sen. Angus King (I-ME) introduced a Senate companion version of this bill with the support of two Democratic cosponsors, and that bill also didn’t receive a committee vote. Most recently, Rep. O’Rourke and Sen. King both reintroduced this bill in the 115th Congress, and neither bill received a committee vote.


Of NoteUnder current law, most donations to candidates and committees are only disclosed via quarterly filings with the FEC. Contributions of $1,000 or more to Senate campaigns must be filed with the Secretary of State on a quarterly basis, and all other political action committee or campaign contributions of $1,000 or more must be filed with the FEC on a quarterly basis. Only contributions made within the last 20 days before an election need to be disclosed within 48 hours.


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / NoDerog)

AKA

Real Time Transparency Act of 2019

Official Title

To amend the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to require all political committees to notify the Federal Election Commission within 48 hours of receiving cumulative contributions of $1,000 or more from any contributor during a calendar year.

    We need to be able to see who is giving how much to whom.
    Like (82)
    Follow
    Share
    Who I donate to or how much I donate are my business ONLY, not some opposition political party or government bureaucracy.
    Like (28)
    Follow
    Share
    I’d like faster disclosure, but 48 hours may be a little too often. Every week on Wednesday sounds good to me, though.
    Like (53)
    Follow
    Share
    We need transparency in our elections. Americans need to know who is behind candidates and what they expect in return.
    Like (43)
    Follow
    Share
    All funds over $1000.00 and must include foreign donations (Clinton foundation).
    Like (41)
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    Transparency transparency transparency. Although it may be overload to do it within 48 hours... maybe once a week?
    Like (30)
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    Yes they should disclose every penny very quickly.
    Like (30)
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    Absolutely and we need to get rid of Citizen's United too!
    Like (23)
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    We need complete transparency.
    Like (22)
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    Ultimately, we need public financing of elections, but this is a good start. All large donations to a political candidate should be disclosed promptly. We need as much transparency as possible in our campaign finance system.
    Like (22)
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    Great idea! Then, we know who’s buying them off faster!
    Like (12)
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    Absolutely including Individual PAC donations, corporate and 501.3c’s as well. I’m assuming all foreign donors and foundations will be included.
    Like (12)
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    Yes, transparency in political campaign donations is imperative. Considering we are talking about one thousand dollars being disclosed, CITIZENS UNITED HAS DIVIDED US INTO THE TWO GROUPS "OUR ELECTED PUBLIC SERVANTS" SEE "WE THE PEOPLE" IN! CORPORATIONS ARE DECIDING POLICY FOR THEIR EMPLOYEES BY HAVING POLITICIANS PASS BILLS THAT THEY CAN BOX US IN TO. THE CONSTITUTION OF THESE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. STATE THIS IS A GOVERNMENT FOR THE PEOPLE AND BY THE PEOPLE
    Like (12)
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    Better yet, no donations! No begging for money. Or use the money for your campaign on helping your constituents, spend the money on US.
    Like (11)
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    What is to be afraid of?
    Like (8)
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    🤷🏼‍♂️ House Bill H.R. 429 AKA the “Real Time Transparency Act of 2019” 🤷‍♀️ I’d support, with reservations, the House Bill H.R. 429 AKA the “Real Time Transparency Act of 2019” which would require real-time disclosure of donations over $1,000 to candidates and committees within 48 hours. HOWEVER, I’m sure that some smart cookie 🍪 will figure a way, I.E. contributing $9,999, to circumvent the system as seen of folks who bypass Federal,law on the reporting bank deposits $10,000+. The technology to support real-time disclosure of political campaign contributions is already in place, thanks to electronic filing. There’s no reason for candidates and committees to not disclose their donors on a real-time basis, rather than waiting for the end of each quarter. SneakyPete..... 👍🏻🤔🤔👍🏻. 3*20*19.....
    Like (8)
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    This is a pure invasion of privacy and a way to open up the leftist mob to attack those who vote the opposition. It can hurt those who work in certain fields and business. Do you want to know who your friends, family, and colleagues vote for? Will you show bias toward them? This is another way to divide us further in the guise of transparency.. The most you can donate is $5,000 as a person or a corporate PAC anyway. The system already allows people to self fund their campaigns so most of the time the rich are the only ones who can afford to run. You want to make it fair? Cap the funding equally to both sides and make all policy debates live and FREE for local and national candidates..
    Like (6)
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    All dollar amounts donated to political campaigns should be disclosed. The number of times a person donates should also be disclosed.
    Like (6)
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    Transparency. You have nothing to fear unless you’re doing something wrong. The only time when transparency becomes a problem, is when your trying to hide what you’re doing. Seems really straight forward doesn’t it?
    Like (6)
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    No. Make it $50,000. $1000 dollars is too low. They just have dinners then that are $2800 a plate. Kamala. At any rate this can’t be stopped. The Clintons went from literally stealing White House silverware to having 100’s of millions. Let’s see if we can stop $200 million and work our way down to $1000.
    Like (5)
    Follow
    Share
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