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Members, officers, and employees may accept food, refreshments, and other benefits provided by a political organization in connection with a fundraising or campaign event sponsored by that organization (House Rule 25, clause 5(a)(3)(G)(iii)). Under this provision, Members, officers, and employees may also accept transportation and lodging from the sponsoring political organization in connection with such an event, provided that the travel rules are observed. In addition, they may participate in a golf tournament or attend a show or sporting event sponsored by the political organization, provided that the event is a bona fide fundraiser. The term “political organization” is defined in this provision by reference to § 527(e) of the Internal Revenue Code.37
Under this provision of the gift rule, like the provisions concerning widely attended and charity fundraising events, Members and staff may accept an invitation only from the event sponsor. They may not accept a ticket from a person that has simply donated money or purchased tickets to the event.
In addition, a meal with a lobbyist or other individual during which the individual gives a Member a campaign contribution is not a fundraising or campaign event under this provision of the gift rule, unless the meal is sponsored and paid for by a political organization, and the expenditures are reported as required by Federal Election Commission regulations or applicable state or local laws.
Example 25. Members and staff may accept complimentary tickets to a Republican National Committee fundraising dinner from the RNC.
Example 26. A political action committee buys a table at a DCCC fundraising dinner. A House staff member may not accept a ticket to the dinner from the PAC under this provision of the gift rule.