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The Campaign Legal Center is committed to protecting our democratic system. A healthy democracy requires an engaged citizenry and functioning civic processes that allow citizens’ voices to be heard and that ensure public officials can be held accountable. We employ a variety of strategies to protect and improve the democratic process—litigating in courts to defend pro-democracy policies and challenge anti-democracy policies, participating in regulatory agency proceedings to interpret and enforce the law, and drafting pro-democracy laws and policies and advocating their adoption. We engage in this work at every level of government—municipal, county, state and federal.

  • Campaign Finance

    The way our elections are financed is directly related to the health of our democracy and the quality of our public policies.  The Campaign Legal Center understands the importance of laws and regulations that foster transparency and fairness as well as promote the robust competition of ideas that are a hallmark of a functioning democracy. Recent election cycles have seen troubling developments, with less disclosure of where big money is coming from, larger roles for Super PACS and 501(c)(4) and a dysfunctional regulatory system. We work to protect the integrity of our democracy by litigating a wide range of campaign finance cases at the federal and state level, and by participating in rulemaking proceedings and filing complaints at federal and state enforcement agencies. We also offer our perspective through reports, speeches and op-eds, and provide links to primary source material from court cases and administrative agency proceedings.

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  • Government Ethics

    It is critical for the health of our democracy for public officials to abide by high ethical standards. The Campaign Legal Center works to strengthen ethics rules and to ensure that public officials comply with the rules and standards governing ethical conduct. We assembled and lead the Ethics Working Group, an ideologically diverse group of the nation's leading government reform organizations pushing for strong ethics rules and effective enforcement.

    Read the American Anti-Corruption Act, drafted by CLC President Trevor Potter for the organization "Represent. US".  The AACA is model legislation that sets a standard for city, state and federal laws that prevent money from corrupting American government.

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  • Media Policy

    The Campaign Legal Center shapes political broadcasting policy by promoting awareness and enforcement of political broadcasting laws through rulemaking proceedings and complaints at the Federal Communications Commission, Congressional action, litigation in the courts and public education. We support efforts to revitalize competition in our democratic process by ensuring that the public airwaves serve as a forum for open and vibrant political debate, especially among candidates, through stronger public interest obligations for digital broadcasters and efforts to make the airwaves accessible to more candidates—not just those with deep pockets or access to special interest dollars to pay for political advertising.

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  • Redistricting

    Too many federal and state legislative districts are drawn to disenfranchise voters, especially minorities. Too often, politicians choose their voters, rather than voters choosing their representatives. The Campaign Legal Center undertakes litigation to challenge unfair district lines when merited, offers expertise on states’ processes for drawing legislative district lines, and works to support independent redistricting commissions.

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