“The Administration of Federal Campaign Finance Laws”

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On October 4, 2019, the Gray Center co-hosted “The Administration of Democracy⏤The George Mason Law Review’s Second Annual Symposium on Administrative Law.” For the second annual symposium, scholars wrote papers on such fundamental questions as: Is nonpartisan campaign-finance regulation possible? Who should draw electoral maps—and how? How can we best protect voting rights? How should the census be administered? How do we preserve the regulatory process’s democratic legitimacy? And, are members of Congress entitled to see the President’s tax returns? These papers are forthcoming in the George Mason Law Review. In addition, the event featured a Keynote Conversation with two former public servants with deep expertise in both governance and campaigns: Robert Bauer, former White House Counsel to President Obama, and Donald McGahn, former White House Counsel to President Trump.

The first panel focused on the administration of federal campaign finance laws. We discussed two new papers: Capital University Law School Professor Bradley Smith’s paper, “Feckless: A Critique of Criticism of the Federal Election Commission Structure, and Possible Lessons for the Administration of Campaign Finance and Election Law,” and George Washington University Law Professor Richard Pierce’s paper, “A Realistic Version of Campaign Finance Reform and Two Essential Steps Toward a Return to Effective Governance.” Pierce is affiliated with the Gray Center as a member of our Advisory Council. The discussion was moderated by the Gray Center’s Executive Director, Adam White, and also features a welcome from George Mason Law Review Editor-In-Chief, Conor Woodfin. The video is available at http://administrativestate.gmu.edu/events/the-administration-of-democracy-the-george-mason-law-reviews-second-annual-symposium-on-administrative-law/.

Featuring Bradley A. Smith, Richard J. Pierce, Ciara Torres-Spelliscy, Trevor Potter, Conor Woodfin, and Adam White.

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