Soft Mone1 - • Issue ads The Supreme Court ruled that as...

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Soft Money Until recently, political parties were able to indirectly provide large amounts of money to candidates. The campaign finance laws passed in the mid-1970s limited donations to campaigns: Each person could only donate $1,000 to a campaign for the general election. Individual donors, however, could give unlimited amounts of money to parties and some political groups. Political scientists call this type of unregulated donation soft money. Although the parties could not use soft money to help candidates directly (by donating it to a campaign, for example), the parties could spend it in ways that helped their candidates. Parties use soft money to sponsor the following: Voter registration and GOTV drives: The party can selectively register voters who are likely to support the party. During get-out-the-vote (GOTV) efforts, parties wage campaigns to encourage voting and target people likely to vote for the party.
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Unformatted text preview: • Issue ads: The Supreme Court ruled that as long as an ad does not explicitly say “vote for candidate X” or “vote against candidate Y,” the ad is not considered a campaign ad. Therefore, parties can run ads attacking the opponent and saying good things about their nominee. In 2002, Congress passed the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, popularly known as the McCain-Feingold bill, which banned soft money. Parties could no longer raise unlimited amounts of unregulated money. However, parties have responded by delegating some of their duties to 527 groups (named after section 527 of the Internal Revenue Code). These private organizations are not officially affiliated with the parties and can therefore raise and spend money in much the same way that parties could before the reform law. For this reason, some critics allege that campaign finance reform did nothing but weaken the parties....
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2012 for the course POS POS2112 taught by Professor Leslietaylor during the Winter '09 term at Broward College.

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