In response to the news that Senate Republicans will hold a confirmation hearing next week for Federal Election Commission (FEC) nominee Trey Trainor, Issue One Executive Director Meredith McGehee released the following statement:
“It is unacceptable that the watchdog for our federal elections has been without a quorum to conduct even the most basic business for more than six months. But reopening the Federal Election Commission with a nominee who does not think we should enforce the nation’s campaign finance laws will only make matters worse.
“The best way to protect our elections — and increase public confidence in them — is for the president to nominate, and the Senate to confirm, individuals who will put their constitutional oaths to uphold the law above personal ideological views. Anything short of that will only continue the dysfunction at the FEC.”
The six-member FEC currently has just three sitting commissioners. And while a term on the FEC is designed to be six years, the most junior FEC commissioner has been serving for nearly 12 years (roughly double a normal term) and the longest-serving FEC commissioner has been serving for more than 17 years (roughly three times a normal term).
Without a quorum of at least four commissioners, the FEC’s enforcement backlog has grown to more than 300 cases — including about three dozen that involve alleged illegal foreign interference in U.S. elections.
Through the FEC M.I.A. project, Issue One continues to spotlight how the FEC has been effectively shut down since September 1, 2019, following the resignation of one commissioner in August.