NAVIGATING THE COMPLEXITIES
Exhilaration, speculation, suspense—and immense complexity. Political campaigns have it all. They are the backbone of the American system of government, and Butler Snow’s Election and Campaign Finance Team is well-versed in all their facets.
Our work with candidates and elected officials at the local, state and federal levels has included voting rights challenges, campaign finance matters, local and state redistricting, and contested election challenges. Our team includes a former state legislator and chiefs of staff to several governors, former chief counsels to a governor, and a former lead counsel for the Mississippi Standing Joint Legislative Committee on Reappointment and the Standing Joint Congressional Redistricting Committee.
In addition to working directly with elected officials and politicians, our team also works with business clients to help them understand state and federal campaign finance laws and regulations. Our clients include corporations, trade associations, labor organizations, political committees, candidates, individuals, and tax-exempt entities.
Our team takes a hands-on approach; and we provide practical insight, which can only be gained through direct government involvement and deep legal experience in the field. Backed by this experience, Butler Snow has the expertise to efficiently and effectively handle any election or campaign finance issue that confronts businesses or elected officials.
In addition to direct involvement in political campaigns, many businesses seek our counsel regarding the complex laws and regulations involving campaign contribution limits, political action committees (PACs) and corporate expenditures, at the state and federal level. Our group regularly advises clients on matters related to pay-to-play rules, lobbying, gift/travel/entertainment limits, ethics rules, post-employment restrictions, the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), Federal Election Committee (FEC) and applicable enforcement issues. We represent business clients nationwide at the state and federal level in court and at administrative agency hearings on issues related to these matters.
We also work with businesses and organizations to develop political law and government ethics compliance programs, including training companies to carry out these programs. Evidence of effective compliance programs is valuable when defending against civil and administrative enforcement actions.
Key election law cases involving Butler Snow lawyers include:
- McDaniel v Cochran, 158 So.3d 992 (Miss. 2014): Represented the campaign organization of former Senator Thad Cochran in an election-law dispute regarding the contentious 2014 race for U.S. Senate, which drew nationwide attention.
- Barbour v. Hood, 974 So.2d 232 (Miss. 2008): Defended the Governor’s authority to set the date for a special election to fill a vacancy in the U.S. Senate.
- Waters v. Gnemi, 907 So.2d 307 (Miss. 2005): Often-cited decision by the Mississippi Supreme Court addressing the handling of ballots by elections officials.
- Moore v. Molpus, 578 So.2d 624 (Miss. 1991): Defended the Secretary of State in the landmark decision involving the state lottery, which directly lead to the adoption of a constitutional amendment restoring initiative and referendum.