The FAIR ELECTIONS FUND
A Whole New Ball Game©
In order to build a political system that represents voters and invites inclined individuals to serve them in elective Federal offices, under the authority granted in Article One, Section 4, Clause 1 of the U.S. Constitution, [Congress] hereby enacts these regulations for public campaign financing of candidates for the Offices of the President, Vice President, U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives, to take effect immediately. This program operates independently of First Amendment-protected campaign financing practices that do not use public funds.
1. Terminate the current Federal Election Commission's ("FEC") Presidential campaign and political party convention funding assistance effective November 8, 2012, as it is public money supplementing private money that may come from, and benefit, unknown sources. Transfer the remaining balance into this public campaign financing program.
2. To gain representation with taxation, under Article 1, Section 8 Clause 1, and Section 9 Clause 4 of the U.S. Constitution, Congress enacts and the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") will collect, a tax of Seven Dollars ($7.00) per living individual Social Security Number ("SSN") IRS tax filer's annual Federal income tax return to fund this FEC campaign financing program. This means that most funding will arrive around April of every year for most elections that are every other November.
3. As allowed expression under the First Amendment, unlimited donations may be made to the Fund from individuals, clubs, businesses, corporations, organizations, and other special interest groups ("Private Donors"), which may remain anonymous. However, only the FEC, and no Private Donors, may distribute funding, gratuities, or paid services of any kind directly to a participating candidate or their campaign.
4. These publicly funded candidates shall be identified on all ballots as: FEC -- (inclination).
5. Providers of electioneering communications, including television, radio, cable, and wireless service ("Providers") operating on public airways shall provide each publicly funded candidate (or their campaign) for each office in each election area with the following minimum primetime airtime at no cost as follows:
- For sixty (60) days prior to earlier Primary Elections or the fifth and sixth calendar months in a nine (9) calendar month campaign period preceding an election: Five percent (5%) of airtime between 6:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. (average 3 minutes per hour).
- For thirty (30) days preceding the election: Ten percent (10%) of airtime between 6:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. (average 6 minutes per hour).
- The time shall be made available to each publicly funded candidate in each state, district or territory for elective office(s) in non-consecutive 30 and 60-second increments interspersed with scheduled programs.
- The airtime will be adjusted proportionately for shorter duration Special Elections.
- Failure to provide this free Public Service Announcement airtime will result in fines payable to the FCC treble its comparable retail rates. This is a negligible offset for commercial carriers that pay no User Fees for the public's airspace spectrum and whose undervalued auction terms do not achieve spectrum-management objectives.
6. There shall be five (5) voting members of the Board of Directors of the Federal Elections Commission for this program who will be determined as follows: the Vice President of the United States of America, and two each elected by the members of the U. S. Senate and the U. S. House of Representatives on the first business day in February of odd-numbered years or as needed to fill unanticipated vacancies. Most FEC election monitoring and auditing staff and facilities for this program will exist only during campaign periods. Federal agencies may allow program monitors and/or auditors non-exclusive use of civilian-access Federal facilities.
7. There are no restrictions upon individuals, clubs, businesses, corporations, organizations or other special interest groups who identify themselves truthfully to submit their lawful opinions, beliefs, information, research, pamphlets, etc. to any individual, organization, news outlet, office-holder, candidate for office, or the FEC. All truthfully attributed lawful original submissions that arrive at the FEC, through any source, will be distributed by the FEC, individually or in summary, to the FEC-funded candidates for an elective office whose position on an issue may be informed by the submission.
8. Currently, there are more individual Federal income tax filers than Registered Voters who vote, so their contributions can support this program, candidate-by-candidate, District-by-District, and State-by-State. The proportions used herein are based upon the number of Registered Voters in each State, District or Territory to the number of Registered Voters nationwide on December 31, 2011. Those proportions will be adjusted on the anniversary of every twenty-four (24) month period, based upon changes in the number of Registered Voters in each voting area. Reasons for adjustment include, but are not limited to, reaching voting age, relocation, new citizenship status, redistricting, incarceration for a felony, institutionalization for mental disorders, or death.
9. Qualified candidates are defined as a 1) Registered Voter that 2) Submits confirmation by the subject Registrar of Voters that the candidate has personally obtained Supporting Signatures from Registered Voters in the subject jurisdiction (2,000 for House, 3,000 for Senate, and 3,000 each for President or Vice President in 15 States), 3) Meets the Constitutional minimums for each office, and 4) Pays a Five Thousand Dollar ($5,000) enrollment fee to the FEC. Enrollment fees will initially be deposited into a separate account, such as Special Elections, to eliminate misinterpretation about misuse of over $5,000.00 of FEC funds (Paragraph 18).
Registrars of Voters shall process each candidate's submission of Supporting Signatures within thirty (30) days, subject to penalties for non-compliance. Upon receipt of the above, the FEC will authorize and demand, and the Registrar of Voters shall add this program participant, accompanied by a Statement of Candidate with a minimum of 200 words at no cost, to the subject ballots. Registrars may submit to the FEC a request for reimbursement of incremental increases in expenses attributable to compliance with this program. Any other barriers to putting these publicly funded candidates onto ballots are hereby invalidated. Registered Voters shall suffer no infringement of their civil or voting rights or registration for signing petitions for any number of prospective publicly funded candidates, but only for offices that affect the voter's jurisdiction.
Voters need not state any political affiliation to register to vote, write in, or vote for any qualified candidates on the ballot in either primary or general elections. Qualification for voter registration shall be the lowest level currently allowed among all the States.
10. FEC contributions shall be apportioned as follows:
Five percent (5%) to the FEC for administrative expenses and a reserve for Special Elections, and the remainder ("Available Funds") to be distributed by the FEC to the participating candidates (or their campaigns) for a particular office that participate in this program. Twenty-eight percent (28%) of the Available Funds will be dedicated to candidates for the Office of the President and Vice President, Seventeen percent (17%) will be dedicated to candidates for U.S. Senate seats (larger geographic area, more travel and media markets), and Fifty-five percent (55%) will be dedicated to candidates for seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.
11. FEC distributions to participating candidates (or their campaigns) shall begin no earlier than [ninety (90) days prior to earlier Primary Elections or] nine (9) calendar months preceding the General Election. The initial quarterly distributions will not exceed one-third (1/3rd) of the Available Funds in each category, excluding Accumulated Shares. There will be two distributions of the remaining Available Funds, excepting Accumulated Shares, in the two calendar months prior to the election, proportionately divided among the remaining candidates (or their campaigns). The numbers will change constantly during the course of election campaigns, in both contributions and candidates. These changes will be reflected in the total pool and proportionate distribution of Available Funds in each category at the end of each calendar quarter of the total campaign term.
a. The twenty-eight percent (28%) of Available Funds the FEC is to distribute to participating candidates (or their campaigns) properly entered into an election for the Office of the President or Vice President will be distributed equally and periodically upon written request as shown in the attached Cash Flow.
b. The maximum amount the FEC is to distribute to participating candidates (or their campaigns) properly entered into an election for each open seat in the U.S. Senate will be determined as follows: the amount of Available Funds for the Senate multiplied by a percentage determined as follows: the numerator is the number of Registered Voters in each State with an election, and the denominator is the number of Registered Voters for the entire U.S. population, distributed equally and periodically upon written request as shown in the attached Cash Flow.
c. The maximum amount the FEC is to distribute to participating candidates (or their campaigns) properly entered into an election for each seat in the U. S. House of Representatives will be determined as follows: the amount of Available Funds for the House multiplied by a percentage determined as follows: the numerator is the number of Registered Voters in each House District and the denominator is the number of Registered Voters in that State, distributed equally and periodically upon written request as shown in the Cash Flow.
For example, if a State has six House Districts with simultaneous publicly funded campaigns, the campaign funding would be distributed as follows:
12. From the time FEC candidates properly enter into a campaign for a Federal office and are certified as eligible [unless adjusted for earlier Primary Elections], for each three (3) calendar month period beginning nine (9) calendar months prior to the election, the Available Funds for each race shall be transferred proportionately, in full or in part, to the candidate (or their campaign account) within five (5) business days of a written request, delivered by mail, e-mail, or fax. For example, if for an election in November 2014, six (6) candidates in one race are certified as eligible on February 5th, their requested proportionate share of the Available Funds by February 10th will be sent as described in Paragraph 10. A candidate's share of proportionate funds not requested ("Accumulated Share") remains available to that candidate for immediate distribution upon written request.
Ranking below 5th place in primary elections shall disqualify candidates from the program. Candidates who drop out or are voted out of a race shall not be required to return their used FEC campaign funds. The program's objective is to provide opportunity for more candidates; not force them to dilute funding or votes for more promising candidates.
If there are no publicly funded candidates for an available office in each election, the Available Funds for each distribution shall be divided equally among the current participating candidates.
13. Six minus "a" and plus "b" certified candidates in this race on May 5th may request all or a portion of their Accumulated Shares and proportionate third of Available Funds by May 10th, which will be sent within five (5) business days of written request to the candidate's account. Proportionate and Accumulated Shares remain available to that candidate for immediate distribution upon written request.
14. Six minus "c" and plus "d" certified candidates in this race on August 5th may request all or a portion of their Accumulated Shares and proportionate Available Funds by August 10th, which will be sent within five (5) business days of written request to the candidate's account. Candidates may continue to request their shares through October 31st.
15. During the nine (9) calendar months prior to an election, FEC-funded candidates (or their campaign) must submit to the FEC certified accountings, with supporting documentation, of their current and total campaign expenditures on the last business day of each calendar month. FEC-funded candidates and their immediate family members may use campaign funds for reasonable living expenses and campaign-related travel within the office's jurisdiction. The FEC will audit these submissions and may suspend periodic distributions to a candidate until discrepancies are reconciled. Candidates may be suspended from the ballot if unrelated expenditures, failure to actively campaign or provide timely accountings, expenses over $200.00 per month without receipts, expenditures in excess of FEC allotments, or willfully using paid resources from Private Donors is discovered. The FEC shall make each candidate's monthly and amended statements available to the public within five (5) business days. Candidates who drop out, are voted out, or suspended from the program must return unused FEC funds, with a certified final accounting, within ten (10) business days
16. A separate set of publicly selected Electors shall vote in accordance with the Twelfth and Twenty-Third Amendments.
17. The FEC will distribute to candidates (or their campaign accounts), upon written request, unused Available Funds and/or Accumulated Shares remaining in their account up to ten (10) business days after the election to pay for final campaign expenses, based upon the candidate's certified accounting and receipts for their actual final campaign expenses. The FEC will not fund a candidate's expenditures that exceed their total proportionate share of FEC allotments. Distributed funds that a Candidate (or their campaign) did not use must be returned to the FEC within ten (10) business days. The FEC shall make these final accountings available to the public within ten (10) business days. Undistributed funds after that 10-day period will remain with the Federal Election Commission.
18. A vote of five (5) of the Directors may remove a publicly funded elected legislator from Congressional office if it is proven that they willfully violated the terms of the program and misused or failed to account for over $5,000.00 of FEC funds. In the event this occurs, the FEC-funded candidate with the second-highest number of votes for the same office will be sworn into office. This may occur only once for each seat per election. Whether or not to pursue a criminal inquiry or prosecution remains with the affected jurisdiction.
19. If this program is adapted to other levels of government, the tax filer may direct the Internal Revenue Service to distribute specific contributions into those programs and/or to the State account that is the donor's primary place of residence or doing business in the United States of America for apportionment between State, County, and local elections; for example: The Fair Elections Fund© for the State of California, or The Fair Elections Fund© for the City of Seattle, WA, etc.
20. Candidates for Federal offices not participating in this program, their campaigns, family, friends and associates, 501(c) Groups, 527 Groups, Non-Federal Groups, Political Action Committees and other special interest associations must submit certified accountings to the FEC reporting the true source and value of funds, gratuities, expenditures, services, or materiel for any kind of candidate-related political activity with a value in excess of $2,000.00 per contributor on the last business day of each calendar month beginning twenty (20) calendar months prior to Election Day, or proportionately adjusted for Special Elections. The FEC will make this information available to the public within five (5) business days of receipt of a written request.
All campaign-related activities and materials must meet the Disclosure standards assumed by the Supreme Court in its Citizens United and McCutcheon decisions. Non-compliance with any of the above will result in a $20,000 fine and thirty (30) days imprisonment for those responsible for each monthly failure to submit an accurate accounting of contributions to a campaign, candidate, or issue.
- Add Approval Voting (www.electology.org) to 1) dilute the "spoiler" effect of more than two candidates, 2) identify the participating runner-up if the Directors remove a legislator under Paragraph 18, and 3) inform the Electors in Paragraph 16.
- Add S. 375 (digital records).