From the Commissioner…
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Montana's campaign disclosure laws are considered among the best in the country, and in the last year incredible advances have been made in on-line filing and availability of information collected by this agency. We are dedicated to continued improvement of this system.
Campaign finance complaints and decisions are also available, as well as recent ethics decisions of note. The docket of pending complaints has doubled in the last few years, and the complexity of those complaints is ever-increasing. This is an exciting and interesting time to watch the evolution of campaign finance, and I am honored to enforce the laws of this great state on behalf of her citizens.
James W. "Jim" Murry Commissioner of Political Practices
Order Staying Complaint Proceedings
Welch Recount Opinion (11/27/12)
PBS/Frontline Documentary/Pro Publica Article Press Release (11/1/12)
Ninth Circuit Courts Opinion on Contribution Limits (10/16/12)
Commissioner's Statement on Contribution Limits (10/10/12)
Ninth Circuit Court Order to Stay Judge Lovell's Contribution Limits Order (10/9/12)
Statement regarding order on Contribution Limits (10/5/12)
Judge Lovell's order on campaign contributions (10/3/12)
The United States Supreme Court has reversed the decision of the Montana Supreme Court, which had upheld the constitutionality of Montana's Prohibition on independent corporate campaign expenditures provided in Mont. Code Ann. 13-35-227. This means that corporations may make independent expenditures to support or oppose a candidate or political party. However, as stated in a previous district court ruling "It should here be noted that this ruling has no effect on direct corporate contribution to candidates or to any existing or future disclosure laws that might be enacted." (Western Traditional Partnership v Attorney General Bullock, No. BDV-2010-238, Order at 12 (Mont. 1st Dist. Oct. 18, 2011). [Judge Sherlock's Order on Cross-Motions for summary Judgment].
The prohibition on direct corporate contributions to candidate campaigns, and the reporting requirements for campaign expenditures and contributions regardless of their source remain in effect. All campaign contributions and expenditures, whether monetary or in-kind, must be reported to this office.
A prohibited direct contribution is a contribution from a corporation to a candidate, political party, or a political committee that supports or opposes a candidate, except contributions to political committees that will be used solely for independent expenditures. An independent expenditure is defined in ARM 44.10.323(3) and (4). That Rule also defines "coordinated expenditures" which must be reported as an in-kind contribution.
- End of Session Lobbying Financial L-5 Reports are due May 24, 2013 this report is required for all registered Principals
- Lobbying Frequently Asked Questions
- Montana Republican Party v Schweitzer Final Order
- New: Public Employee Ethics Training
The Commissioner has jurisdiction over laws and rules pertaining to: