The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces the federal Election Campaign Act (FECA). This Agency was established in 1975 by Congress. The duties of the FEC are to disclose campaign finance information, to enforce the limits and prohibitions on contributions, and to oversee public funding of Presidential elections.
The FEC consists of six Commissioners appointed by the President, with the Senate’s confirmation. The term of office of each member is six years and every two years, two seats are subject to appointment. Not more than three Commissioners can be members of same political party. Also, at least four votes are necessary for any official action by the Commission. This requirement was intended to encourage non-partisan decisions.
Each year a Chairman is elected from the members of the Commission and no member becomes a Chairman more than once during the member’s term. The Commissioners are responsible for administering and enforcing the Federal Election Campaign Act. The Commissioners meet twice a week, one meeting remaining confidential and the other being a public meeting.
The purpose of public meetings are to formulate new policies, issue advisory opinions, approve audit reports concerning political committees, administer campaign finance law and vote on important legal and administrative matters. The confidential meeting in executive session discusses pending enforcement actions, litigation and other matters.