Briefing Room
Daniel Tokaji


Tokaji releases new election spending book

June 18, 2014 | Faculty

Professor Daniel P. Tokaji released a book entitled “The New Soft Money: Outside Spending in Congressional Elections” at an event at the National Press Club.

In the years since Citizens United, there has been a torrent of outside money flood election campaigns. While there has been considerable attention to raw numbers, much less was known about the real-world effects of such spending — until now.

Tokaji and  Strause  have written the most comprehensive report to date on the impact of independent spending, as told by those in the best position to know. Based on over 40 interviews with political players across the ideological spectrum, their report The New Soft Money: Outside Spending in Congressional Elections, paints a vivid picture of how outside spending affects contemporary elections and politics.

The New Soft Money addresses these questions:

  • What kinds of outside groups engage in outside spending, and what are their objectives?
  • How has outside spending changed congressional campaigns, including candidates’ attempt to maintain message discipline?
  • Is independent spending used or perceived as a threat to congressional candidates who refuse to toe the line of outside groups?
  • Do outside groups and candidate campaigns cooperate? Do they engage in illegal coordination?

This study was made possible by a grant from the Open Society Foundations.

Following a 9 a.m. press conference at the National Press Club on June 18, there will be  a panel discussion on the book at the George Washington University School of Law. Panelists include: Donald F. McGahn, partner at Jones Day; former Federal Election Commission (FEC) commissioner; Brian Svoboda, partner at Perkins Coie, Political Law practice group;  Larry Noble, of counsel at Campaign Legal Center; former FEC general counsel; and Bradley A. Smith, chairman and founder of Center for Competitive Politics; former FEC commissioner.  The event will be live-streamed at:

For more information on the book, please visit: http::// or follow #newsoftmoney