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Michael Toner Comments on Federal Matching Funds and Ballot Eligibility

The Washington Times; Chicago Tribune
January 9, 2012

Election Law & Government Ethics Practice co-chair Michael Toner was interviewed by The Washington Times for a story on the death of federal matching funds, the tax-payer backed system that has partially funded presidential campaigns since the 1970s.

The article reports that of the more than 300 people who officially filed with the Federal Election Commission as a presidential candidate, only one has requested matching funds.  “It used to be that only second-tier candidates accepted matching funds. Now not even they are doing so,” said Mr. Toner, former chairman of the FEC.

Mr. Toner was also interviewed by The Chicago Tribune for a story on GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum’s failure to get on the ballot in Virginia and Washington, DC.  The article reports that Santorum has joined other GOP candidates in a lawsuit against Virginia alleging that it is a “severe burden” for the state to require signatures from 10,000 registered voters for inclusion on the ballot.

“This is the nitty gritty of what you have to do to get nominated,” said Mr. Toner.  “No GOP candidate in the modern era has been nominated after failing to qualify in multiple states.  This is a huge under-the-radar challenge to every campaign.”