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For Immediate Release Contact:  Judith Ingram
August 15, 2012 Julia Queen
  Christian Hilland

WASHINGTON –The Federal Election Commission issued two advisory opinions concerning the use of mobile phone text messaging to raise contributions for political committees. The Commission discussed the advisory opinion requests at its open meeting on August 2, then held a tally vote on the draft advisory opinions yesterday.

Advisory Opinion 2012-26 (Cooper for Congress, ArmourMedia, Inc., and m-Qube, Inc.). The Commission concluded that Cooper for Congress (the Committee), ArmourMedia, Inc., and m-Qube, Inc.’s proposal to receive and process contributions by text message is consistent with the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended, (the Act) and Commission regulations. In approving the advisory opinion, the Commission determined that the Committee is solely responsible for determining the eligibility of its contributors and that it will not receive in-kind contributions when wireless service providers apply their normal business practices in their administration of the Committee's text message program.

Advisory Opinion 2012-28 (CTIA – The Wireless Association). The Commission concluded that CTIA – The Wireless Association’s proposal to process contributions by text message is consistent with the Act and Commission regulations. The Commission determined that CTIA and the wireless service providers are not responsible for determining the eligibility of a contributor or for ensuring compliance with (1) the $50 monthly limit on contributions, (2) the recordkeeping obligations for contributions in excess of $200, or (3) the limitation of one short code per campaign.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces federal campaign finance laws. The FEC has jurisdiction over the financing of campaigns for the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, the Presidency and the Vice Presidency. Established in 1975, the FEC is composed of six Commissioners who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

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