H.R. 20: Government By the People Act of 2014

Feb 05, 2014
Referred to Committee
1% chance of being enacted
Track this bill
John Sarbanes
Representative for Maryland's 3rd congressional district
Read Text »
Last Updated
Feb 05, 2014
76 pages
Related Bills
H.R. 268 (Related)
Grassroots Democracy Act of 2013

Referred to Committee
Last Action: Jan 15, 2013


This bill was assigned to a congressional committee on February 5, 2014, which will consider it before possibly sending it on to the House or Senate as a whole.

Introduced Feb 05, 2014
Referred to Committee Feb 05, 2014
Reported by Committee ...
Passed House ...
Passed Senate ...
Signed by the President ...

2% chance of getting past committee.
1% chance of being enacted.

Only 11% of bills made it past committee and only about 3% were enacted in 2011–2013. [show factors | methodology]

Full Title

To reform the financing of Congressional elections by broadening participation by small dollar donors, and for other purposes.


No summaries available.

143 cosponsors (142D, 1R) (show)

House Energy and Commerce

Communications and Technology

House House Administration

House Ways and Means

The committee chair determines whether a bill will move past the committee stage.

Primary Source

THOMAS.gov (The Library of Congress)

GovTrack gets most information from THOMAS, which is updated generally one day after events occur. Activity since the last update may not be reflected here. Data comes via the congress project.


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H.R. stands for House of Representatives bill.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the president to become law.

The bill’s title was written by its sponsor.

GovTrack’s Bill Summary

We don’t have a summary available yet.

Library of Congress Summary

The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.

Government By the People Act of 2014 - Amends the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) to allow a refundable credit of 50% of qualified congressional House campaign contributions paid or incurred during the taxable year (contributions of cash by an individual to a House candidate or a political committee established and maintained by a national political party if the contribution is not prohibited under the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 [FECA], to be known as "My Voice Federal" contributions).
Directs the Government by the People Oversight Commission, established by this Act, to launch a pilot program under which it shall select three eligible states to operate a voucher pilot program.
Requires a state under a voucher pilot program to provide each qualified individual during the election cycle, upon his or her request, with a "My Voice Voucher" worth $50 (in either paper or electronic form), which will be assigned a routing number.
Authorizes the individual, using the assigned routing number, to submit the My Voice Voucher, in either electronic or paper form, to qualified federal election candidates, allocating a portion of its value in $5 increments.
Requires the Commission to pay any candidate who transmits a My Voice Voucher that portion of its value which the individual allocated to the candidate.
Considers this transaction a contribution by the individual to the candidate for purposes of FECA.
Requires a state operating a voucher pilot program also to permit an individual to revoke a My Voice Voucher within two days after submitting it to a candidate. Requires such a state to establish a commission or designate an existing entity to oversee and implement the program in the state, except that no such commission or entity may be composed of elected officials.
Amends FECA with respect to:
benefits for participating House of Representatives candidates; Federal Election Commission (FEC) payments to such candidates; candidate use of payments; qualified small dollar contributions, expenditures, and fundraising requirements; certification of participating candidates; campaign administration; prevention of the unnecessary spending of public funds; establishment of the Freedom From Influence Fund in the Treasury and of a Government by the People Oversight Commission in the FEC; remittal of unspent funds to the Freedom From Influence Fund after an election; eligibility of participating candidates for additional payments; civil penalties for violation of contribution and expenditure requirements; a Commission action appeals process; and contributions and expenditures by multicandidate and political party political committees on behalf of participating candidates.
Prohibits a certified participating candidate's authorized committee from establishing a joint fundraising committee with any political committee other than another authorized committee of the candidate.
Prohibits a certified participating candidate from establishing, financing, maintaining, or controlling a leadership PAC (political action committee).
Prohibits use of contributions by a participating candidate for any purposes other than an election campaign.
Revises bundler disclosure requirements to repeal a specified exception and so require disclosure of persons who provided bundled contributions to the reporting committee.
Amends FECA to empower the FEC to petition the U.S. Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari to appeal a civil action to enforce the Act.
Requires all political committee designations, statements, and reports required to be filed under FECA to be filed: (1) directly with the FEC; and (2) in electronic form accessible by computers. Reduces from 48 hours to 24 hours after their receipt the deadline for the FEC to make designations, statements, reports, or notifications available to the public in the FEC office and on the Internet.
Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to set a station's lowest unit price for preemptible use as the charge for a broadcast by the national committee of a political party for an affiliated candidate.
Authorizes the FEC to revoke a broadcast station license or construction permit only for at least three willful failures to allow reasonable access to, or to permit purchase of reasonable amounts of time for the use of, a broadcasting station or cable system by a legally qualified candidate for federal office.
Amends the IRC to allow tax payers to designate that a specified portion of any overpayment of tax be contributed to the Freedom From Influence Fund.

House Republican Conference Summary

The summary below was written by the House Republican Conference, which is the caucus of Republicans in the House of Representatives.

No summary available.

House Democratic Caucus Summary

The House Democratic Caucus does not provide summaries of bills.

So, yes, we display the House Republican Conference’s summaries when available even if we do not have a Democratic summary available. That’s because we feel it is better to give you as much information as possible, even if we cannot provide every viewpoint.

We’ll be looking for a source of summaries from the other side in the meanwhile.

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