Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 9, 2016

House Schedules Vote to Eliminate Taxpayer Financing of Presidential Campaigns (Updated)

The House of Representatives has scheduled a vote this week to eliminate taxpayer financing of presidential campaigns.

The House is scheduled to take up H.R. 2019 at noon on Tuesday, December 10th. The bill was introduced on May 16th by Rep. Gregg Harper, R-Miss., and has more than 150 co-sponsors. The bill would terminate the $3 taxpayer designation for financing of presidential election campaigns; the presidential election campaign fund; and the presidential matching payment account.

Organizations urging a “No” vote include Common Cause, Democracy 21, the League of Women Voters, Demos, Public Citizen, U.S. PIRG, American for Campaign Reform, the Brennan Center for Justice, the Campaign Legal Center, and the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. These groups have outlined their position in a letter to members of Congress.

From 1976 through the 2004 election, almost all presidential candidates from both major parties chose to use the public financing system to fund their campaigns. The Federal Election Commission issued a booklet describing the program.

UPDATED: A spokesperson for Majority Leader Eric Cantor said the bill has been amended and the revised text will terminate funding for political party nominating conventions, not the entire Presidential Election Campaign Fund.

Updated 12/10: The bill is now scheduled for Wednesday, December 11th.

Updated 12/11: The House passed the bill with a roll call vote 295-103 under suspension of the rules (two-thirds vote required). See Roll Call article, “Democrats Ignore Leaders to Pass Pediatrics Research Bill.”

To search detailed money-in-politics databases, visit Political MoneyLine.

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