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Transparency in Elections

Transparency in Elections

Real transparency about who is spending big money on elections at all levels of government will mean more government accountability, less influence for wealthy special interests and less political corruption.  

Wealthy special interests often run election ads that are deliberately misleading. Voters need to know who is funding these ads so they can weigh their credibility and cast an informed vote. 

Transparency Solutions  

Fortunately, there are policy solutions available that will put an end to this deception and restore transparency to our elections. These measures should include:  

  • A trace back mechanism that identifies the original sources of campaign spending, by requiring anyone acting as a conduit to track large donations. 
  • Rules that extend existing political ad transparency requirements to digital ads, ensure that digital ads clearly identify their sponsors, and require a public archive of digital ads to ensure that unlawful ads don’t escape notice. 
  • A requirement that any campaign ad run by a super PAC or other outside group include a disclaimer listing the group’s top three donors. 
  • A rule protecting donors from having their money spent on election ads against their wishes.   
  • A stronger Federal Election Commission (FEC) to enforce campaign finance laws and hold political candidates and their donors accountable. Learn more about the FEC.
  • Provisions included in H.R. 1, the "For the People Act," passed by the House in 2019 would also help to increase transparency of campaign spending. 
Learn more about transparency in elections

Visit CLC's DemocracyU project to read more about proposals being implemented at different levels of government across the United States that provide for free and transparent elections.