Campaign finance policy has experienced major and minor changes since 2002, when the campaign finance law was substantially amended by the Congress thru the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) (Garret, 2011). BCRA affected the use of soft money by banning unregulated soft money in federal elections, as well as restricting funding sources for electioneering communication. As implementation of BCRA was taking place, some court cases and regulatory developments at Federal Election Commission (FEC), stimulated controversy and forced the Congress to focus on campaign finance issues. Since the introduction of BCRA, the Congress has continued to explore legislative alternatives and has made some changes to the campaign finance law. In addition, FEC, courts, and other administrative agencies have continued to explore other campaign finance policy matters (Garret, 2011).
Some changes which were introduced in the campaign finance law recently include: unlimited union and corporate spending on electioneering communications and independent expenditure; unlimited contributions to Independent-Expenditure-Only Political Action Committees (Super PACs); and Some Funding for Publicly Financed State-Level Candidates. There are other issues which have not been changed, among them are federal ban on corporate and union treasury contributions, federal ban on soft money contributions to political parties; most contribution limits remain intact and report requirements which were enacted in FECA and BCRA (Garret, 2011).
Despite recent developments, some of the unchanged issues need some attention. FEC and presidential public financing might require congressional attention despite some changes made earlier. As the Congress takes action on the law surrounding political campaigns in their current move, they should try to examine the changes which have been implemented, what has not changed, and what policy options may be relevant. Campaign finance and soft money reform are supposed to be evaluated critically in order to determine whether they are functioning the way they are supposed to. National party organizations mostly use soft money accounting convention to raise money. Soft money is mostly used to finance GOTV (get-out-the-vote) programs and adverts (Garret, 2011).