A man takes part in a demonstration outside the Supreme Court in Washington as the court heard arguments on campaign finance, Oct. 8, 2013.
Photo by Susan Walsh/AP

New GOP group to rake in big bucks for Senate fight

When the Supreme Court struck down the aggregate limits on campaign contributions, there were warnings that the ruling could pave the way for million-dollar-plus checks to flood the system—making a mockery of efforts to limit the influence of money in politics.

We’re not there yet – but we are getting closer.

Republicans are launching a new group that will let donors give up to $162,400 to help the party’s Senate candidates in the most competitive races. Politico reported on the organization Tuesday.

The group, known as the Targeted State Victory Committee (TSVC), could give the GOP an edge as it fights to win control of the Senate. Democrats have not yet formed a similar group of their own.

TSVC is a joint project of the National Republican Senatorial Committee and 13 state Republican parties: Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and West Virginia. With a single check, donors can give $32,400 to the NRSC, and $10,000 each to the state parties—which can spend the whole thing on their state’s Senate race.

In April, the Supreme Court ruled by a 5-4 margin in McCutcheon v. FEC that limits on the total amount donors can give to all candidates and parties were unconstitutional. Until then, donations to candidate committees were limited to $48,600, and contributions to political action committees were limited to $74,600.

Just weeks after the decision, the Republican National Committee joined with the House and Senate campaign committees to form the Republican Victory Fund, which plays a similar role to the TSVC.

Aside from boosting the GOP this fall, the groups could help the party assert more control over the financing of its campaigns. Since the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United ruling, outside groups like Super PACs, which can now accept unlimited contributions from businesses and wealthy donors, have come to play an increasingly central role in the fundraising landscape, sometimes causing headaches for the parties.

Campaign Finance and Supreme Court

New GOP group to rake in big bucks for Senate fight