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The Year of the Super PAC

27 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2014 Last revised: 22 Feb 2014

Michael S. Kang

Emory University School of Law

Date Written: December 1, 2013


2012 was the year of the Super PAC. In the first presidential election cycle since their development, Super PACs raised almost one billion dollars and enabled the very wealthy to channel money into campaigning like never before during the post-Watergate era. However, still so early in the Super PAC’s evolution, 2012 offered only a taste of what comes next. Super PACs of the future will not serve merely as voice amplifiers for candidates and parties, as they typically seemed in 2012. Super PACs, and related 501(c) entities, enable very wealthy individuals to avoid the usual coordination costs of mass politics and bypass the major parties, a capacity that they will learn to exploit for their independent ends.

Keywords: Campaign Finance, Citizens United, Caperton, Speechnow, Lobbying, Bribery, Independent Expenditures, Elections

Suggested Citation

Kang, Michael S., The Year of the Super PAC (December 1, 2013). George Washington Law Review, Vol. 81, p. 1902, 2013; Emory Legal Studies Research Paper No. 14-270. Available at SSRN:

Michael S. Kang (Contact Author)

Emory University School of Law ( email )

1301 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States

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