Campaign Funds for Childcare

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Using CFCC: FAQ

HOW DO I USE MY CAMPAIGN FUNDS FOR CHILDCARE?
  • Candidates can use campaign funds for any campaign-related childcare expense, including nursery school tuition, babysitter on staff, and childcare for campaign events.

  • Candidates should report childcare expenses in the same way they would for any other campaign related expenditure. The specifics for reporting differ by state. Visit the website of the entity that oversees campaigns in your state for specific filing requirements.

  • Contact us if you need support using your Campaign Funds for Childcare, requesting an ethics ruling, or advocating for legislation.

  • We are tracking the use of Campaign Funds for Childcare in all 50 states. Contact us to let us know if you’ve used it, and sign and share our pledge.

HOW DO I REQUEST AN ETHICS RULING?

​Contact us, and we will work with you to:​

  • Submit a request for a ruling.

  • Use the FEC ruling to support your case.

  • Submit a letter of support from Vote Mama Foundation.

WHAT IF THE ETHICS COMMISSION RULES AGAINST MY REQUEST?

​Contact us, and we will work with you to:​

  • Submit a request for reconsideration.

  • Submit a letter of support from Vote Mama Foundation. 

  • Identify state legislators to introduce legislation.

HOW CAN I HELP NORMALIZE CAMPAIGN FUNDS FOR CHILDCARE?

We need to talk about it to normalize it.​

  • Spread the word on social media! Tag us on Twitter and Instagram at @votemamafdn and use #CampaignFundsForChildcare and #CFCC so we can amplify!

  • Publish an op-ed. 

  • Sign and share our pledge.

"Childcare is already very expensive for working families, so to incur additional childcare costs to run for office is definitely a barrier, and it is a barrier that disproportionately affects women and limits our access to political participation and representation. [...] We need more moms in office, and I am proud to be part of Vote Mama's efforts to break down these needless barriers."

Morgan Lamandre

At first the Louisiana Ethics Commission ruled that a woman could not use Campaign Funds for Childcare, even though they had approved it for four men candidates in the past. They told Democratic State House candidate Morgan Lamandre that she had “misplaced priorities” and that having a child was her “primary responsibility.” Vote Mama Foundation advised her on her appeal, and she won.

Louisiana State House Candidate, District 66

Success Stories

“When I ran for school board it was under very different circumstances. […] But Congress is such a different ball game. When we began talking about running, I was super pregnant with our second child. Having the knowledge that we could use Campaign Funds for Childcare expenses because of Liuba’s work to get child care covered for all moms pursuing federal office was a considerable factor.” 

Candace Valenzuela

Candace Valenzuela was the first Latina and African-American woman to serve on the Carrollton-Farmers Branch school board. She was homeless for a time as a child and fled domestic abuse. Valenzuela ran for Congress in 2020 with a newborn and a toddler by her side. She has said that using her Campaign Funds for Childcare was “campaign saving."

The cost of running for federal office can be so financially prohibitive that it keeps strong candidates from running. Thanks to her ability to use campaign funds for childcare, Valenzuela paved the way for more working parents like her to run in the future.

Congressional Candidate, TX-24

“For legislators in other states considering introducing legislation to allow Campaign Funds for Childcare know that it is a gamechanger. It breaks down a barrier that doesn’t have to be there. The seat came open in my district. As a young mother, you think about timing with family, you think you are going to wait. But why not me? I am a product of my community, I grew up here. I loved politics, I was qualified and prepared. There are local decisions about growth that are really important to me, and at the state level you can really make a difference. I worked at a conservative think tank. I had to quit my job to run full-time. In order to run and serve in elected office, I had to be able to pay for childcare.”

Candice Pierucci

Candace Valenzuela was the first Latina and African-American woman to serve on the Carrollton-Farmers Branch school board. She was homeless for a time as a child and fled domestic abuse. Valenzuela ran for Congress in 2020 with a newborn and a toddler by her side. She has said that using her Campaign Funds for Childcare was “campaign saving."

The cost of running for federal office can be so financially prohibitive that it keeps strong candidates from running. Thanks to her ability to use campaign funds for childcare, Valenzuela paved the way for more working parents like her to run in the future.

Utah State House Representative, District 52

“My kids are three and two years old. My wife is also in the workforce, and recently received a promotion. Our family had to reevaluate whether we can afford to still do this job. Living between Washington, D.C. and San Francisco is incredibly expensive. On top of the official duties, there is an obligation to campaign for House candidates and be away a lot. It was taking a toll financially. Campaign Funds for Childcare has allowed me to keep doing necessary political work, and having children has changed my policy perspective and priorities. When you have more mouths to feed and childcare expenses, you realize how much student loan debt takes out of your monthly paycheck.”

Eric Swalwell

Eric Swalwell was first elected to Congress in 2012 and is one of the 14 dads at the federal level who used Campaign Funds for Childcare during the 2020 election cycle. 

Utah State House Representative, District 52

"I used to pay for childcare out of pocket, but I now use campaign funds to pay for it after receiving a legal brief from my attorneys saying nothing in Virginia prohibits the use of Campaign Funds for Childcare. Without that childcare, especially during a pandemic, there is no doubt in my mind that I would not be able to complete the tasks needed to excel in a campaign. I have heard candidates express fear and hesitancy to use campaign funds for childcare expenses. This creates an unnecessary barrier for parents, lower income heads of households, and women from seeking elected office, which undermines Virginians' right to full representation in our state and local democracy."

Jennifer Carroll Foy

Jennifer Carroll Foy gave birth to premature twin boys, Alex and Xander, during her first campaign for the Virginia House of Delegates, and she won her race. She recently stepped down as a Delegate to focus full-time on building a grassroots movement in her campaign for Governor. 

Gubernatorial Candidate & Former Virginia State Delegate

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Vote Mama Foundation is the leading source of research and analysis on the political participation of mothers. We are normalizing moms running for office with young children, breaking the barriers they face while running, and enabling legislators to pass legislation that is truly family friendly.   

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