Building Campaign Organizations (2015)

Building the Team
On March 23, Sen. Ted Cruz (R) became the first major candidate to formally announce his candidacy.  Others followed in April, May, June and July.  Once Vice President Joe Biden ruled out a run on October 21 the the fields of Republican and Democratic candidates were set.  The campaign committees worked hard at raising money and buidling organizations.  The first part of the year was a fascinating time as the many pre-candidates purported to be making their decisions about running; in fact they had all but decided.  Pre-candidates had a number of vehicles for their activity.  Leadership PAC were common, but some prospects had 501(c)(4)s or 527 organizations.  As they neared launch of their campaigns, some of the presidential prospects established testing the waters committees or exploratory committees, but others eschewed this intermediate step.  The first three or four months of 2015 in particular saw daily reports of hirings and signing ons as campaigns-in-waiting were assembled.  In addition to the national staff and advisors, much work went on in the key early states.  The goal was to assemble a team of top talent that could work together effectively to boost the candidate and his or her message and secure the party's nomination.  The campaigns started with their organizations in the early states, but also began to name chairs, steering committees, leadership committees and/or advisors/consultants in other states.

The Super PAC Election: A Parallel Universe
As candidates built their campaign organizations, work was simultaneously going on on a parallel track to create super PACs, which can raise funds in unlimited amounts to support candidates.  Many super PACs closely aligned with potential presidential candidates sprouted up, particularly following the 2014 midterms.  The super PACs were nominally independent (wink, wink).  For example, the executive director of the CARLY for America super PAC formerly served as political director of Fiorina's Unlocking Potential.  The assistant treasurer of Jeb Bush's PAC and super PAC were the same person; the treasurer of Bobby Jindal's Believe Again PAC and the pro-Jindal Believe Again (super PAC) were the same person.  Once an individual formally enters the race and becomes a candidate, however, the wall between the candidate and the super PAC must be clear.

"This committee intends to make independent expenditures, and consistent with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit decision in SpeechNow v. FEC, it therefore intends to raise funds in unlimited amounts.  This committee will not use those funds to make contributions, whether direct, in-kind, or via coordinated communications, to federal candidates or committees."  

Super PACs first had an impact in 2012, starting in the Republican primaries.  In 2016 many of the super PACs were better funded than the candidates' official campaigns.  The super PACs essentially waged the campaign in a parallel universe, engaging in a variety of activities from traditional advertising to field organization and offices. 

More
Finally there were also non-profit policy or issue education groups aligned with several of the candidates.  Right to Rise Policy Solutions, Inc. had ties with Jeb Bush and Conservative Solutions Project had ties with Marco Rubio; all in alll these did not seem to have much impact.

See also a good list at: Center for Responsive Politics. "Behind the Candidates: Campaign Committees and Outside Groups."

Republicans  |  Democrats  |  Others

See also: Organization in Iowa  |  New Hampshire  |  South Carolina   |  More States  ||  Link to the Committees

Republicans

Former Gov. Jeb Bush - Jeb 2016, Inc.   ...presidential campaign committee; filed articles of incorporation with                                                    the Florida Department of State on June 4, 2015; announced/filed with the FEC on                                                       June 15, 2015.                                       
                                         - Right to Rise PAC   ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 6, 2015.

Dr. Ben Carson - Carson America  ...presidential campaign comm. announced/filed with the FEC on May 4, 2015.
                           - Carson America Exploratory Committee  ...filed with the FEC on March 2, 2015.
                           - USA First PAC  ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on Aug. 26, 2014.

Gov. Chris Christie - Chris Christie for President, Inc.   ...announced June 30, 2015, filed with the FEC on July 1.
                                 - Leadership Matters for America PAC, Inc.  ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 23,                                            2015.

Sen. Ted Cruz - Cruz for President   ...presidential campaign committee filed with the FEC on March 23, 2015.
                        - Jobs, Growth and Freedom Fund   ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on Nov. 14, 2012.
                        - Ted Cruz for Senate (2018) (FEC).
                        - Ted Cruz Victory Committee   ...joint committee filed with the FEC on March 1, 2013.

Carly Fiorina - Carly for President   ...presidential campaign comm. announced/filed with the FEC on May 4, 2015.
                       - Unlocking Potential PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on June 9, 2014. 
                     
Sen. Lindsey Graham - Lindsey Graham 2016   ...announced/filed with the FEC on June 1, 2015.
                                      - Security Through Strength   ...527 testing the waters committee formed Jan. 29, 2015.

Former Gov. Mike Huckabee - Huckabee for President   ...presidential campaign committee annc'd May 4, 2015;                                                         filed with the FEC on May 8.
                                                 - Prosperity for All Fund   ... 527 organization formed March 18, 2015. 
                                                 - America Takes Action   ...501(c)(4) formed 2014.
                                                 - HUCK PAC   ...filed with the FEC on April 8, 2008.

Gov. Bobby Jindal - Jindal for President  ...announced June 24, 2015, file with the FEC on June 26.
                                - Bobby Jindal Exploratory Committee   ...announced May 18, 2015.
 
                               - American Future Project  ...527 organization formed late March 2015.
                                - America Next   ...501(c)(4) formed Oct. 2013.
                                - Stand Up to Washington PAC   ...filed with the FEC on March 11, 2014;
                                  renamed Believe Again PAC in early Feb. 2015.
                              
Gov. John Kasich - Kasich for America   ...presidential campaign committee filed with the FEC on July 23, 2015.
                               - New Day Independent Media Committee Inc.   ...527 organization reported on July 6, 2015.                                           ...filed with the FEC as a super PAC on Aug. 8, 2015 (see below).
                               - New Day for America   ...527 organization announced April 20, 2015.  ...filed with the FEC as a                                     super PAC on July 23, 2015 (see below).
                               - Balanced Budget Forever   ...501(c)(4) formed Nov. 2014.

Former Gov. George Pataki
- Pataki for President, Inc.  ...ann'ced May 28, 2015; filed with the FEC on June 2, 2015.
                                               - Pataki for President Exploratory Committee  ...filed with the FEC on May 19, 2015.
                                               - We the People, Not Washington PAC  ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 5, 2015;                                                  announced Jan. 22.

Sen. Rand Paul - Rand Paul for President Inc.    ...presidential campaign committee filed with the FEC on
                             April 7, 2015.
                           - RAND PAC  ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on March 9, 2011.
                           - Rand Paul for U.S. Senate 2016 (FEC).
                           - Rand Paul Victory Committee   ...joint committee filed with the FEC on June 11, 2013.

Gov. Rick Perry - Perry for President, Inc.   ...announced June 4, 2015, filed with the FEC on June 30, 2015.
                           - RickPAC  ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on July 31, 2014.
                           - Americans for Economic Freedom   ...501(c)(4) formed Sept. 2013.
                           
Sen. Marco Rubio - Marco Rubio for President   .....pres. campaign committee filed with the FEC on April 13, 2015.
                                - Reclaim America PAC  ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on Aug. 2, 2011.
                               - Marco Rubio for Senate (2016)   ...not seeking reelection (FEC). 
                               - Rubio Victory Committee   ...joint committee filed with the FEC on March 28, 2011

Former Sen. Rick Santorum - Santorum for President   ...announced/filed with the FEC on May 27, 2015.
                                                - Rick Santorum Presidential Testing the Waters Committee  ...formed April 9, 2015.
                                                - Patriot Voices   ...501(c)(4) launched June 8, 2012. 
                                                - Patriot Voices PAC  ...filed with the FEC on Aug. 30, 2012.


Donald Trump - Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.  ...announced June 16, 2015.
                         - The Donald J. Trump Presidential Exploratory Committee  ...announced March 18, 2015.

Gov. Scott Walker - Scott Walker Inc.   ...filed with the FEC on July 2, 2015.
                               - Scott Walker Inc. Testing the Waters   ...announced June 18, 2015.
                               - Our American Revival   ...527 organization formed late Jan. 2015.

Former Gov. Jim Gilmore - Gilmore for America LLC   ...filed with the FEC on July 29, 2015.

Not In
Former Amb. John Bolton - John Bolton PAC    ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on March 8, 2013.
                                             - The Foundation for American Security and Freedom    ....501(c)(4) announced Feb. 20,                                                2015.

SUPER PACS AND MORE
Supporting:
Former Gov. Jeb Bush - Right to Rise USA    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 16, 2015.
                                       - Right to Rise Policy Solutions, Inc.   ...501(c)(4) formed Feb. 2, 2015. (+)
                                       - Millennials for Jeb    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 26, 2015. (+)

Dr. Ben Carson
- One Vote   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on March 17, 2015.
                           - The 2016 Committee    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Oct. 23, 2014.
                           [National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee    ...super PAC filed w/ FEC on Aug. 21, 2013].

Gov. Chris Christie
- America Leads   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Feb. 23, 2015.

Sen. Ted Cruz
- Keep the Promise PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on April 9, 2015. (+)
                         - Keep the Promise I   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on April 9, 2015.
                         - Keep the Promise II    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on April 9, 2015.
                         - Keep the Promise III     ...super PAC filed with the FEC on April 9, 2015.
                         - Stand for Truth PAC
                         - Courageous Conservatives PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Sept. 16, 2015.
                         - Stand for Principle PAC    ....super PAC filed with the FEC on Nov. 7, 2014.
                        
- Draft Ted Cruz for President   ....super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 10, 2014. (+)

Carly Fiorina
- CARLY for America Committee    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Feb. 25, 2015. (+)

Former Gov. Jim Gilmore - Growth PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Sept. 22, 2014.

Sen. Lindsey Graham - Security Is Strength PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Mar. 3, 2015.

Former Gov. Mike Huckabee
- Pursuing America's Greatness   ....super PAC filed with the FEC on Mar. 11, 2015.

Gov. Bobby Jindal
- Believe Again   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 22, 2015.

Gov. John Kasich - New Day for America   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on July 23, 2015.
                               - New Day Independent Media Committee, Inc.   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Aug. 6, 2015.

Former Gov. George Pataki - We the People, Not Washington PAC  ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 5, 2015;                                                announced Jan. 22.

Sen. Rand Paul - America's Liberty PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Oct. 16, 2012.
                           - Concerned American Voters  ...super PAC re-filed with the FEC on June 12, 2015.

Former Gov. Rick Perry - Opportunity and Freedom PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Mar. 4, 2015.
                                         - Opportunity and Freedom I   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on June 26, 2015.
                                         - Opportunity and Freedom II   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on July 10, 2015.

Sen. Marco Rubio - Conservative Solutions PAC   ...super PAC re-filed with the FEC on Feb. 24, 2015.
                              
- Conservative Solutions Project   ...501(c)(4) formed Jan. 2014.

Former Sen. Rick Santorum
- Working Again PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on July 1, 2015.

Gov. Scott Walker
- Unintimidated PAC   ..super PAC filed with the FEC on April 16, 2015 (+).
                                 [Draft Scott Walker for President 2016    ....super PAC filed with the FEC on Feb. 18, 2015. (+)]

Not In
Former Amb. John Bolton - John Bolton Super PAC   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Mar. 8, 2013.


Democrats

Vice President Joe Biden - Office of the Vice President.

Former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton - Hillary for America   ...presidential campaign committee filed with the FEC on April 13, 2015.
 
Former Gov. Martin O'Malley - O'Malley for President   ...announced May 30, 2015; filed statement of organization with the FEC on May 29.
                                                 - O'Say Can You See PAC (O'PAC)  ...filed with the FEC on July 23, 2012.
                                                - O'Say Can You See PAC (non-federal - 527)   ...formed Aug. 16, 2012.

Former Gov. Lincoln Chafee - Chafee for President   ...announced June 3, 2015; filed statement of candidacy with the FEC on June 16, 2015
                                                - Chafee 2016 Exploratory Committee.   ...announced April 9, 2015 (+).

Former Sen. Jim Webb - Webb 2016 Exploratory Committee.   ...announced Nov. 19, 2014 (+).
                                        - Born Fighting PAC   ...filed with the FEC in Dec. 2006.

Sen. Bernie Sanders - Bernie 2016  ...presidential campaign committee filed with the FEC on April 30, 2015.
                                    - Friends of Bernie Sanders (Senate campaign committee) (FEC).
                                    - Progressive Voters of America    ...leadership PAC filed with the FEC on Sept. 30, 2004.

SUPER PACS
Supporting:
Former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton - Correct The Record  ...super PAC formed May 2015.
                                                            
- Priorities USA Action   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on April 29, 2011.
                                                             - Ready for Hillary    ....super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 25, 2013.
                                                           

Gov. Martin O'Malley
- Generation Forward PAC  ...super PAC formed late May 2015.

Sen. Bernie Sanders
- Draft Bernie    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Jan. 28, 2014.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren - Ready for Warren Presidential Draft Committee    ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Aug. 7, 2014.

Vice President Joe Biden - Draft Biden   ...super PAC filed with the FEC on Mar. 18, 2015.

OTHER
Sen. Elizabeth Warren - Run Warren Run   ...MoveOn.org Political Action and Democracy for America.


Other Parties

Dr. Jill Stein (G) - Jill Stein for President Committee   ...announced June 23, 2015.
                            - Jill2016 Exploratory Committee   ...527 testing the waters announced Feb. 6, 2015.
                            - Green Shadow Cabinet   ...501(c)(4) announced April 22, 2013 (+).

Former Gov. Gary Johnson (L) - Gary Johson 2016    ...announced Jan. 6, 2016.
                                                     - Our America Initiative   ...501(c)(4) formed in 2009.



Research and Rapid Response
Additionally, American Bridge 21st Century through its Correct the Record and America Rising are conducting extensive research and rapid response on potential 2016 presidential candidates and will clearly be key players in the 2016 campaign.

American Bridge 21st Century
America Rising LLC




Notes
1. Various types of organizations fulfilled exploratory or testing the waters functions, as outlined in a Campaign Legal Center white paper (1) and complaints, and in several complaints from the Democratic-aligned American Democracy Legal Fund (a, b, c) and the Republican aligned Foundation for Accountablity and Civic Trust (d). 

Paul S. Ryan.  "'Testing the Waters' and the Big Lie: How Prospective Presidential Candidates Evade Candidate Contribution Limits While the FEC Looks the Other Way."  Campaign Legal Center, Feb. 20, 2015 (+).  Note: The Campaign Legal Center also joined with Democracy 21 to file several complaints with the FEC on March 21 (+).


2. Brent Ferguson.  "Candidates & Super PACS: The New Model in 2016."  Brennan Center for Justice, June 12, 2015.


3. In terms of super PACs, two particularly well-organized independent groups formed in 2013, seeking to build grassroots support for possible candidacies: Ready for Hillary and the National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee.  These two super PACs each reported a bit over $12 million in total receipts in 2014.  Some of the super PACs did not take off.  Ready for Romney formed on Dec. 17, 2014; Ready for Christie PAC launched in Nov. 2013, but was inactive by Jan. 2014; Human Action Super PAC, formed to support Rand Paul, drew a bit of early attention but then went quiet.

- Earlier edition of this page: Pre-Campaign Organization (2013-14)


Federal Election Commission:
2016 Presidential Elections

older information:
2013-14 Finances

Potential Candidates' PACs Total Receipts and Total Disbursements in 2013-14 Cycle
FEC Post-Election Reports (Jan. 1, 2013 to Nov. 24, 2014)


Total Receipts
Total Disbursements
Ending COH
USA First PAC [8/26/14]
Dr. Ben Carson
$377,072 $169,255 $207,817
Jobs Growth and Freedom Fund
Sen. Ted Cruz
$2,093,333 $1,954,341 $138,992
Unlocking Potential PAC [6/9/14]
Carly Fiorina
$1,867,019 $1,576,573 $290,445
HUCK PAC
Fmr. Gov. Mike Huckabee
$2,209,073 $1,927,069 $493,228
Stand Up to Washington PAC [3/11/14]
Gov. Bobby Jindal
$251,003 $245,970 $5,032
RAND PAC
Sen. Rand Paul
$3,627,921 $3,763,313 $290,105
RickPAC [7/31/14]
Gov. Rick Perry
$204,691
$142,202
$62,489
Reclaim America PAC
Sen. Marco Rubio
$3,818,373
$3,964,367
$15,527
Patriot Voices PAC
Fmr. Sen. Rick Santorum
$1,805,824
$2,011,091
$89,232
O'Say Can You See PAC
Gov. Martin O'Malley
$1,338,359
$845,671
$521,050
Ed. note. Keep in mind that this is federal activity.

Independent Super PACs Total Receipts and Total Disbursements in 2013-14 Cycle
FEC Post-Election Reports (Jan. 1, 2013 to Nov. 24, 2014)

Total Receipts
Total Disbursements
Ending COH
Debts/Loans
Ready for Hillary PAC
$12,173,249
$11,297,623
$875,626
$1,000,000
Ready for Warren Pres. Draft [7/1/14]
$66,106
$54,776
$11,329

National Draft Ben Carson for Pres.
$12,252,716
$12,018,823
$233,893
$390,684
Draft Ted Cruz for President [1/10/14]
$426,503 $415,617 $10,885

Ed. note. Keep in mind that this is federal activity.  Ready for Hillary reported debts/loans of $1,000,000.




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