Election Day Expenditures

This is probably a good time to run a refresher post on election day expenditures.

RS 18:1531 – PART VII. ELECTION DAY EXPENDITURES

§1531. Transportation of voters

A. No person or political committee shall accept or agree to accept, either directly or indirectly, from a candidate, a political committee, or a person required to file reports pursuant to R.S. 18:1501.1, or from a person on behalf of a candidate, a political committee, or a person so required to file reports, anything of economic value, including any reimbursement of costs, for the purpose of conveying an elector or causing an elector to be conveyed in a motor vehicle to a polling place for the purpose of voting in an election or to any place where early voting is being conducted for the purpose of early voting, or for driving or being in charge of any motor vehicle being so used.

B. No candidate, political committee, or person required to file reports pursuant to R.S. 18:1501.1, and no person on behalf of a candidate, a political committee, or a person so required to file reports, shall pay, or agree or offer to pay, anything of economic value, including any reimbursement of costs, to any person or political committee for the purpose of conveying an elector or causing an elector to be conveyed in a motor vehicle to a polling place for the purpose of voting in an election or to any place where early voting is being conducted for the purpose of early voting, or for driving or being in charge of a motor vehicle being so used.

C. Whoever violates the provisions of this Section shall be assessed a civil fine of not more than two thousand five hundred dollars. On a second violation, or any succeeding violation, the penalty shall be a civil fine of not more than five thousand dollars. The provisions of R.S. 18:1505.6 shall not apply to violations of this Section.

D.(1) The provisions of this Section shall not be applicable to any person who gratuitously transports voters to the polls on election day or who gratuitously transports voters to vote during early voting.

(2) The provisions of this Section shall not prohibit paying or offering or agreeing to pay any bona fide bus, taxi, or transportation service, which holds a license or permit duly issued by the appropriate governmental entity and which regularly does business in the area, to convey an elector to vote or vote during early voting, nor shall this Section prohibit any such bus, taxi, or transportation service from accepting or agreeing to accept such a payment.

Added by Acts 1981, No. 716, §1, eff. July 23, 1981; Acts 1993, No. 199, §1, eff. June 1, 1993; Acts 2005, No. 220, §4, eff. Jan. 1, 2006.

4 Responses to “Election Day Expenditures”

  1. Jim Schmidt Says:

    I wonder where “canvasing” fits into this statute. What do these reciepients
    do for this money?

    • Walter Abbott Says:

      I did a quick google of the term in relation to Louisiana’s election law. The term is used when votes are counted AFTER the election. The legal definition in that regard apparently has some relation to certifying election results.

      But what is the exact definition of the term in relation to pre-election day activity, I have not found.

  2. Chase Says:

    Is it legal for the Candidate to drive people to the polls?

    • Walter Abbott Says:

      The way I read the law (FWIW, since I’m not a lawyer) is that you cannot HIRE someone to do vote hauling unless you hire it done by “…any bona fide bus, taxi, or transportation service…”

      Further, if the voter transportation is done “gratuitously” (for free) the law allows it.

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