As part of your social science class, you mean to teach your students about this country’s politics. Part of the lesson is educating them about how our election process works. You then decided to hold a mock election and divided the class into groups. The groups are divided into key sectors that play significant roles in the election process. After that, you gave each group instructions on how their roles should be performed. After you’re done organizing the class, you then announce that the mock elections would be done in three segments. These segments are the campaign, voting, and oath-taking segments. You start the simulated election process by letting them start with the campaign phase. Part of the process of the campaign process is making them submit mock documents required by real politicians to accomplish. One of those documents required is the Campaign Finance Form.
What Are the Campaign Finance Forms?
Campaign Finance Forms are report forms required for candidates, who are running for federal elections, to submit for transparency purposes. These forms discloses the sources of campaign funds used by politicians for their campaign expenses. This is required for auditing purposes by the federal election commission. Information inside the Campaign Finance Form will then be disclosed to the public to help them decide which politicians to vote for.
4+ Campaign Finance Forms
1. Campaign Finance Report Form
2. Personal Campaign Finance Disclosure Form
3. Campaign Financial Report Form
4. Campaign Finance Municipal Form
5. Local Filer Campaign Finance Form
Why Campaign Finance Reporting and Disclosure Matter?
We are very familiar with the relationship that money has with power. Politics, as far as history is concerned, is tarnished by individuals and groups who dig deeper from their pockets just to put themselves in power. The unholy union of money and power in the bed of politics has caused grave concerns to President Theodore Roosevelt. In response, Congress enacted a series of federal election campaign laws to bring a more comprehensive reform on campaign financing during federal elections. This legislation is one of the earliest campaign laws that prohibit banks and corporations from financing and funding political campaigns during federal elections. These laws are aimed at:
- Limiting the number of contributions from entities and interest groups.
- Prohibiting certain sources of funds to be used in the federal elections.
- Controlling and limiting campaign expenditures.
- Preventing abuse by requiring public disclosure of campaign funds sources.
Campaign finance reporting and disclosure is one of the products of the series of federal election campaign laws passed by Congress. Its ultimate goal is to bring a more transparent, honest, and fair federal elections by requiring candidates to submit a campaign finance report and disclosure form which would be made known to the general public. This activity reports and discloses the sources of campaign funds spent by candidates for their political campaigns. The items required for them to report are:
- The amount of monetary and financial contributions, loans, expenditures, distributions, and fund transfers.
- The names and information of entities and individuals who extended such contributions and assistance to political candidates.
These items will enable voters to give a picture of the political agenda and interest a political candidate holds. These would also help voters in choosing the right candidate to vote for during federal elections. Most importantly, it assures transparency, honesty, and fairness of the federal elections by holding candidates accountable to the public.
How to Complete a Campaign Finance Form
As part of educating your students about the election process of this country, you made your class hold a mock election. You start the mock election process by letting your students launch their election campaigns as part of the process. You also require them to submit mock documents just like real candidates do. One of those documents is the Campaign Finance Form. To help your students, you take it as a responsibility to provide them such a mock document to not burden your students any further. For you to do that, below are the steps on how to obtain a Campaign Finance Form and instructions on how to complete it.
Step 1. Download a Sample Campaign Finance Form
To start, choose among a list of sample Campaign Finance Forms listed in the section inside this article. Choose any of the sample Campaign Finance Forms that you find comfortable for your students to understand and answer. After choosing the sample Campaign Finance Form of your liking, click the download button so that you can print it.
Step 2. Print the Campaign Finance Form
Next, print the Campaign Finance Form after downloading one from a list of samples that we provided. Print many copies of the Campaign Finance Form according to the number of students who will play as the political candidate for the mock elections. Print the Campaign Finance Form using your home, office, or school printer.
Step 3. Distribute the Campaign Finance Forms to your Students
After printing your Campaign Finance Forms, distribute them to the students who are assigned to play as political candidates. Make sure you distribute the Campaign Finance Forms in an organized manner, hand them personally to each group if possible. This is so that the Campaign Finance Forms will not be torn apart, and you do not need to reprint them.
Step 4. Give Instructions on How to Answer them
After everyone received their respective Campaign Finance Form, proceed on giving them instructions on how to answer the form. The Campaign Finance Form will ask for personal information about the individuals who are assigned as political candidates and campaign managers. The form will also ask for details about fictional contributors and the fictional amount of funds they contributed. Remind your class to answer the Campaign Finance Form truthfully and accurately.
Step 5. Collect the Completed Campaign Finance Forms
Next, collect the Campaign Finance Forms after your students are done answering them. Collect the completed Campaign Finance Forms in a neat and orderly fashion, the same as you did when you distributed them. Examine each Campaign Finance Forms after you’re done collecting them.
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