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March 19, 2014

Party-Based Corruption and McCutcheon v. FEC

Shaun McCutcheon contributed almost half a million dollars in
campaign finance money over the last three years but wanted to contribute
still more. In the 2011–2012 election cycle alone, he contributed to sixteen
federal candidates, all three national Republican Party committees, and
several other political action committees (PACs). Nonetheless, he wanted
to contribute money to at least a dozen more candidates and even more to
the Republican Party committees. The problem for McCutcheon is that the
additional $100,000 that he wished to donate would have exceeded the
federal aggregate contribution limit that capped the total amount an
individual could contribute during that federal election cycle at $117,000.
In a case popularly billed as the next Citizens United, McCutcheon
challenged this aggregate limit under the First Amendment,
and if
successful, he and other wealthy individuals will be free to donate almost
$4 million in campaign finance contributions each election cycle.