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#18: What to Do After the Election

Election Day is over. What do you do now? A good campaign has a solid wrap-up plan regardless of winning or losing. In this episode of Advisory Opinions, Jack Blakely and Adrienne Royer discuss best practices of winding down your campaign in addition to things that campaigns must do, such as updating donation page disclaimers, filing FEC reports, and sending staffers the right tax forms for 2018. Make sure to check out the show notes for details and links of all the resources discussed in...


#17: Election Day Survival Guide

You've almost made it to Election Day. Find out how to maximize your day with tips and suggestions that your hosts, Jack and Adrienne, gathered from campaign veterans. Hear about lessons learned, strategies for planning your day, and how to best prepare for the unexpected from early in the morning until late that night.


#16: New Campaign Digital Defense Tools

Your campaign security may be bad, but the FEC approved some new tools to help. Jack and Adrienne discuss a recent advisory opinion from the FEC where they exempted Microsoft's AccountGuard from being considered an in-kind donation. Microsoft rolled out a suite of security features for free to political campaigns, PACs, parties and other political entities who are Office 365 customers. Normally, this would be considered an in-kind donation and campaigns would need to disclose it. To the...


#15: Updates!

The world of campaign finance issues has been active in the past couple of weeks, and there are updates to two legal cases mentioned in the episode #14. Jack and Adrienne discuss recent news from CREW vs. FEC and Americans for Prosperity vs. Becerra. They also provide an update on the Senate e-file bill, which President Trump signed this afternoon. For the latest information on the FEC's response to the Senate e-file change, please see CMDI's blog. The views and opinions expressed...


#14: Changes for Political 501(c)4s

This summer, there have been two big changes for 501(c)4 organizations, one from the IRS and one from the US Courts. First, the IRS announced they would no longer collect the Schedule B portion of 990 forms for 501(c)4 organizations. This eliminates the requirement to submit the names and addresses of major donors. Secondly, a DC Circuit Court judge ruled that 501(c)4 organizations must disclose the names of donors who contribute more than $200 towards an independent expenditure. The...


#13: Risky Raffles

Raffles and bingo games are popular fundraisers for churches and nonprofits, but do they work on political campaigns? In this episode of Advisory Opinions, the two hosts discuss the problems and pitfalls that campaigns can get into with these fundraising events, highlight examples in Florida, Kansas and Michigan, and examine the different state laws surrounding games of chance in politics. Visit for more information in our show notes.


#12: Keep your receipts!

Recently, Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-ND) was accused of lying on FEC forms tracking travel reimbursement. How did his campaign show that this was a dirty political attack? He kept his receipts! Jack and Adrienne discuss why it's important to keep those receipts, log those miles, and file timely reports for travel reimbursements. They also go over some of the common pitfalls campaigns makes and tips to make tracking easier. Lastly, they discuss how the Senate is closer than ever before in...


#11: Foreign Money In U.S. Politics

The FEC recently considered two proposals about changing the rules on foreign money in U.S. elections. Is this partisan politics, media hoopla, or a real problem that the FEC needs to address? What laws are already on the books and do they need to be updated? What is the hang up at the FEC? What were in the proposals? What can non-citizens do and not do with US elections? What should campaigns be worried about? Jack and Adrienne discuss if foreign money is a major threat to our elections or...


#10: Your Campaign Security Is Bad

A recent survey from the Shorenstein Center at Harvard Kennedy School found that only 39% of campaign staffers are concerned about hacks. Jack and Adrienne discuss simple steps your campaign can take that aren't expensive or time consuming to make your data and systems more secure. The views and opinions expressed on this podcast are those of the hosts and do no necessarily reflect the policies or positions of CMDI, or any other agency, organization, employer, or company.


Does Janus Change Everything?

This week, the Supreme Court will hand down their decision in the anticipated Janus vs. AFSCME case. In this episode, Jack and Adrienne discuss how elections are likely to change if the Supreme Court rules against public sector unions. Currently, only 6.5% of private sector workers are members of a labor union. However, 34.4% of government employees, at local, state and federal levels, are part of a public sector union. About half of this membership is concentrated in California, New York,...


#8: Data Clean

Dirty data can end up costing your campaign or PAC more since expensive mail packages are sent to wrong addresses and valuable staff time is wasted. Learn about cost-saving practices that also keep your data in shape as Jack and Adrienne discuss data hygiene and maintenance with Greg Andreycak, the director of account services at CMDI. The views and opinions expressed on this podcast are those of the hosts and do no necessarily reflect the policies or positions of CMDI, or any other...


#7: Facebook's New Advertising Rules

Facebook has made the news for their new political ad policy. Jack and Adrienne discuss which ads Facebook considers to be political, the list of topics classified as issue ads, how to get verified, and how the new rules affect nonprofits, small businesses, and former office holders. The views and opinions expressed on this podcast are those of the hosts and do no necessarily reflect the policies or positions of CMDI, or any other agency, organization, employer, or company.


#6: Rosie's FEC Fun

Jack and Adrienne discuss the report that Rosie O'Donnell made campaign contributions that exceeded FEC limits under different names and addresses. Is this the same situation as conservative writer, Dinesh D'Souza? Will Rosie go to jail?


#1: What is Advisory Opinions?

What is Advisory Opinions? Who are the hosts, and why are we doing this podcast?


#2: Money & Polls 2018 Edition

The GOP is breaking fundraising records…but not doing great in the polls. How does this happen and what does it mean for the mid-terms? A discussion on polling, fundraising and how to tell who is winning the horse race.


#5: Recurring donations and why to include them in your strategy

What are recurring donations and why do you need them? Jack Simms, VP of Product Development for CMDI, joins Jack and Adrienne to discuss implementation and strategies to create a recurring donation program on your political campaign.


#3: Cryptocurrency and campaigns.

How to accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency as an FEC-compliant donation for your political campaign.


#4: Most common FEC mistakes and how to stop making them.

Jeff Wernsing, director of compliance for CMDI, joins Jack and Adrienne to discuss the most common mistakes made when making FEC filings.