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Federal Election Commission Ruling Opens Doors for Florida Lawmakers on Ballot Measure Fundraising

A recent Federal Election Commission (FEC) rule has given Florida’s federal lawmakers permission to raise an unlimited amount of money for or against ballot measures.

The FEC’s advisory judgment, applicable nationally and spurred by a Nevada abortion law, eliminates federal candidates’ financial caps with regard to ballot initiatives. With this ruling, the long-standing limits that have been in place since 1971—when candidates shared the ballot with such measures—have been significantly lifted.

The ruling states that politicians may henceforth, without restriction on the quantity or source of funding, seek donations for advocacy organizations that either support or oppose projects. But the decision upholds that candidates are not allowed to participate in campaigns focused only on voter registration or turnout.

The ramifications of this decision go beyond money, since ballot initiatives on recreational marijuana and Florida’s proposed modification to its abortion laws might have a big impact on voter turnout.

Federal limits have been abolished, allowing members of Florida’s House delegation, including well-known fundraisers like Reps. Matt Gaetz and Maxwell Frost, as well as sitting lawmakers like Senator Rick Scott to raise an unlimited amount of money for ballot initiatives.

Even though this decision makes it easier for federal candidates to participate in state-level initiatives, it’s important to remember that, as a result of suspending his campaign, gubernatorial candidate Gov. Ron DeSantis is already free from federal restrictions and is able to raise an unlimited amount of money for or against ballot measures.

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