Outgoing FEC Commissioner Ravel Predicts More Departures from the FEC, Potentially Costing a Quorum

Dave Levinthal for CPI:

Conceivably, Trump could nominate anyone he wants to the FEC, including Libertarians or independents that share his political sensibilities. Federal law only mandates that the FEC feature no more than three commissioners from any one political party — it says nothing about them having to be Republicans or Democrats. Such a scenario could give Republicans a potential advantage on the commission.

But Walther, for his part, says he’s yet to hear from the Trump administration. The White House did not respond to requests for comment about its intentions for the FEC and Ravel’s resignation.

Ravel, without detailing her reasons, says she believes “others on the commission are likely to go into the [Trump] administration” and soon leave the FEC.

Losing a quorum of four commissioners would stop the FEC’s very ability to conduct business. The commission must have four commissioners in place to take most any official action, from opening investigations to levying fines to offering political candidates and committees formal advice on how to comply with federal law. This last happened in 2008, and for months, it crippled the agency.

Goodman, who could not be reached for comment Sunday, in December told the Center for Public Integrity he’s make a decision in early 2017 about whether to leave the FEC. Hunter on Sunday declined to discuss her future plans. Petersen, Walther and Weintraub have each recently said they don’t have immediate plans to leave the FEC.


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