Federal Election Commission v. Akins

Federal Election Commission V. Akins

Federal Election Commission v. Akins

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Federal Election Commission v. Akins, 524 U.S. 11 (1998), was a United States Supreme Court case deciding that an individual could sue for a violation of a federal law pursuant to a statute enacted by the U.S. Congress which created a general right to access certain information.


The plaintiffs were registered voters who had asked the defendant Federal Elections Commission ("FEC") to determine that an organization called the American Israel Public Affairs Committee ("AIPAC") was a "political committee" subject to certain regulations and reporting requirements under the Federal Election Campaign Act, because AIPAC had crossed certain spending thresholds. The FEC determined that AIPAC had indeed crossed those thresholds, but still did not require it to make the required reports because the organization was issue-oriented, not campaign-related. The plaintiffs sought review in the District Court, which granted summary judgment for the FEC; this ruling was affirmed by a panel of the Court of Appeals, but the Court of Appeals en banc reversed. The government sought certiorari, and challenged the plaintiff's standing on the grounds that the plaintiffs had suffered no 'injury in fact'; that if the plaintiffs had any injury it was not fairly traceable to the FEC decision; and that a decision in favor of the plaintiffs would not redress their injury.


Did the plaintiffs suffer an injury in fact sufficient to establish standing?

Opinion of......

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