Kingsport Times News Friday, November 28, 2014

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Roe unsure about net effect of court decision to overturn campaign contribution restrictions

April 5th, 2014 6:54 pm by Hank Hayes

Roe unsure about net effect of court decision to overturn  campaign contribution restrictions

U.S. Rep. Phil Roe

U.S. Rep. Phil Roe isn't sure whether Democrats or Republicans will gain an edge from a U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning limits on how much individuals can contribute overall to federal candidates, parties and political action committees during a two-year period.

"There's just as many wealthy Democratic donors as there are Republican donors," Roe, R-Tenn., insisted in a conference call with reporters "For every Koch brothers (who support Republicans) there is (George) Soros (who supports Democrats) and other groups. I don't know that the decision favors anybody."

Before the high court decision, the aggregate limit stood at $123,200 — no more than $48,600 to all candidates and $74,600 to all PACs and parties.

The majority opinion by Chief Justice John Roberts leaves in place the caps on how much can be given to each of those: $2,600 per election to each candidate, $32,400 per year to each national party committee, $10,000 per year to each state party and $5,000 per year to each federal PAC.

But the decision also allows one person to give to a candidate in every House and Senate race in the country — doing so would add up to more than $2.4 million. The same person could give $97,200 each year to a national party committee, along with at least $500,000 each year to state or local parties.

For an expanded version of this article, please see Sunday's print edition or our expanded electronic edition.

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