December 16, 2010
FEC Shoots Down Proposal For Texted Campaign Contributions
According to ABC News, Federal regulators have recommended against a proposal from the cell phone industry that would've allowed voters to send donations to political candidates via text.
An advisory report from the FEC voiced concerns that the program would not adequately "separate corporate funds from political contributions" and would allow people to exceed the $50 limit for anonymous donations. It left the door open, however, for a new proposal for texted donations, provided it meets certain conditions.
Caleb Burns, a lawyer representing the CTIA, the trade group that submitted the proposal in September, said he was "disappointed" in the FEC's recent advisory opinion, and that "CTIA and its members must now assess whether implementing those requirements is economically viable."
CTIA's lawyers pointed out the massive amounts of charitable money raised through cell phone contributions after Haiti's earthquake as evidence this new method of giving had come into its own.
... "The effectiveness of [cell phone messaging] to initiate small dollar contributions in short order was clearly demonstrated in the Haiti relief context earlier this year," the petition to the FEC said. "Accordingly, [cell phones] are potentially significant tools in grassroots campaign organizing and fundraising and a means to promote small dollar support for federal candidate, party, and political committees."
Read full report.
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