Photo of Zachary G. Parks

Zachary Park advises a wide range of corporate and political clients on federal and state campaign finance, lobbying disclosure, pay to play, and government ethics laws. Mr. Parks regularly advises corporations and corporate executives on instituting political law compliance programs and conducts compliance training for senior corporate executives and lobbyists. He also has extensive experience conducting corporate internal investigations concerning campaign finance and lobbying law compliance and has defended clients in investigations by the Federal Election Commission, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee.

¬†After a hiatus, ads that refer to federal candidates but that stop short of calling for their election or defeat may soon be returning to the airwaves. Only two business days after oral argument, a three-judge D.C. Circuit panel today unanimously reversed a lower court decision that required issue advocacy groups that paid for an “electioneering communication” to disclose all of their donors since January of last year. An “electioneering communication” is a broadcast ad that refers to a clearly identified federal candidate and that airs shortly before an election where the candidate is running. Electioneering communications do not contain the usual appeals to vote for or against specific candidates that campaign ads do. For a variety of reasons, these ads are sometimes preferred over express advocacy ads, particularly by tax-exempt organizations. The opinion comes despite a different D.C. Circuit panel earlier deciding not to stay enforcement of the lower court decision.
Continue Reading Reversing Van Hollen, D.C. Circuit Removes Important Legal Barrier to Television and Radio Political Ads