The Supreme Court last month refused to review a challenge to federal regulators’ method for determining which political groups must register as political action committees and reveal their donors. Without comment, the High Court declined to hear an appeal brought by The Real Truth About Abortion, an anti-abortion group that had sued in 2008 to challenge numerous Federal Election Commission (FEC) rules that govern disclosures of political spending. The case is one of several challenging the disclosure and reporting requirements for political groups in the wake of the infamous Citizens United case, decided by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2010 that removed limits on what companies and unions can spend to support or oppose political candidates.
Previously known as The Real Truth About Obama, the group now known as Real Truth About Abortion, said that it planned to educate voters in 2008 about the policy positions of then-U.S. Senator Barack Obama. It was alleged in the lawsuit that the non-profit group refrained, under the risk of being deemed a political action committee (PAC) by regulators and subject to a federal investigation, from engaging in political activities. The group claimed the FEC’s multi-part test to assess whether a group’s “major purpose” is to engage in federal campaign activity, qualifying it as a PAC, was too vague and chilled more political speech than necessary.
A federal judge in 2011 rejected the challenge, and a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed that decision in June. The Appeals Court called the commission’s methods “a sensible approach to determining whether an organization qualifies for PAC status.” Interestingly, James Bopp, who represents The Real Truth About Abortion, is the same lawyer who brought the Citizens United case. This case is The Real Truth About Abortion Inc. v. Federal Election Commission, U.S. Supreme Court, No. 12-311.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.