January 24, 2019


Pursuant to Iowa Code section 68B.32A(12) and rule 351—1.2, the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board issues this opinion on Iowa Code section 68A.301. We note at the outset that the Board’s jurisdiction is limited to the application of Iowa Code chapters 68A and 68B, Iowa Code section 8.7, and rules in Iowa Administrative Code chapter 351. Advice in a Board opinion, if followed, constitutes a defense to a subsequent complaint based on the same facts and circumstances.


May a candidate committee accept contributions from a federal candidate’s committee? 


Iowa Code section 68A.301 states: 

A candidate’s committee shall not accept contributions from, or make contributions to, any other candidate’s committee including candidate’s committees from other states or for federal office, unless the candidate for whom each committee is established is the same person.  For purposes of this section, “contributions” includes monetary and in-kind contributions but does not include travel costs incurred by a candidate in attending a campaign event of another candidate and does not include the sharing of information in any format. 

Under federal law, it is permissible for a federal candidate to contribute to a non-federal candidate, but “only in amounts and from sources that are consistent with [federal and] state law.”i   Thus, because such a contribution is prohibited under Iowa law, it is impermissible for an Iowa candidate’s committee to accept a contribution from a federal candidate’s committee.   


A candidate’s committee registered with the Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board is prohibited from accepting a campaign contribution from a federal candidate’s committee unless both committees are established for the same person.  


James Albert, Board Chair
John Walsh, Vice Chair
Jonathan Roos
Carole Tillotson
Mary Rueter
Elaine Olson

Submitted by Megan Tooker, Board Legal Counsel

 iFEC Non-Federal Elections Rule, 11 C.F.R. § 300.62.