Election Law

From the Library of Congress Prints & Photographs collection

Guide by Amy Flick.  Last updated October 2011.

Research Guides

Primary Law

U.S. Constitution, U.S. Code, federal statutes

  • Federal Election Commission
    • Compilation of federal election laws, recent and proposed legislation
    • Regulations and Administrative Law
  • NARA Presidential Election Laws
    • Provisions of the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. Code on presidential elections
  • Cornell Wex
    • The Wex encyclopedia page on election law includes links to provisions of the U.S. Constitution (including the CRS Annotated Constitution), the U.S. Code, and major Supreme Court cases on election law
    • Cornell LII also has a table of state code titles on election law
  • Westlaw

Regulations and administrative law

  • Federal Election Commission
    • Regulations from CFR Title 11, Federal Register notices
    • Policy statements, interpretative rules, and guidance documents
    • Database of advisory opinions to search or browse by date
  • Westlaw
    • ELECTION-CFR: CFR sections from Titles 11 and 23 related to the FEC and election law


State Resources

  • NCSL (National Conference of State Legislatures)
    • Elections and Campaigns Topic Area
    • Election-related bills and laws by state
    • Current issues, articles, and reports
  • NASS (National Association of Secretaries of State)
    • Elections & Voting page
    • Surveys and reports of state election-related laws and procedures
    • Presidential primary calendars and information
  • Lexis 50-State Surveys of Legislation and Regulations
    • Include citations and links to state codes on LexisNexis
    • See topics under the heading Government and Politics
  • Westlaw
  • Brennan Center:  50-state guide to redistricting laws and procedures
  • Senate Election Law Guidebook:  includes state (and federal) laws on congressional elections

Secondary Sources

Treatises, Guides, and Books

  • EUCLID and print resources
    • Search by subject "election law - United States," or browse KF4880-4920
  • The Law of Democracy: Legal Structure of the Political Process (Ischaroff) (Reserves)
    • Casebook on democracy and election law in the U.S.
  • CQ Political Reference Suite
    • Electronic editions of CQ reference publications, including CQ Almanac, Guide to Political Campaigns, Guide to U.S. Elections, and Vital Statistics on American Politics.
  • Election Law Manual
    • From William & Mary Law School's Election Law program
    • A PDF textbook on election law

Journals and Periodicals

  • Election Law Journal
    • Periodicals (3rd floor) and Westlaw
    • Articles on election law and campaign finance, full-text cases on election law
  • Westlaw
    • ELECTION-TP: Law reviews, treatise chapters, and ALR annotations on election law


Government Resources

Data and Statistics

  • Emory Electronic Data Center
  • FEC.gov
    • View and download financial disclosure reports and data
    • Download datafiles by candidate, contributor, or committee
    • Search the disclosure database for candidate disclosure records, by party or committee
    • FEC Campaign Finance Disclosure Portal includes charts and summaries
  • American National Election Studies (ANES)
    • Data on voting, public opinion, and political participation
    • Tables and graphs on public opinion surveys 1948-2008
  • Open Secrets (Center for Responsive Politics)
    • Find data and tables on political fundraising and spending by candidate, party, interest group, PAC
  • Follow the money.org (National Institute on Money in State Politics)
    • Find lists of contributions by donor or candidate, reports, and a search feature by contributor, candidate, committee, lobbyist, or ballot measure
  • CQ Voting & Elections
    • Part of the CQ Electronic Library.  Includes election results and data, CQ articles and tables, and reference publications on politics.
  • CQ Exit Polls
    • Electronic version of a book of exit poll tables from national election days 1972-2010
  • Census Bureau
    • Voting and Registration site, with data on voting and voter registrations, redistricting data
  • Election Statistics (Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives)
    • Official vote counts for federal elections, from 1920 to most recently published

Web Resources:  Organizations, Associations, and Academic Institutions

  • Campaign Finance Institute
    • Reports and studies on campaign fundraising.  Includes tables, links to other sources on campaign finance law.
  • Election Law @ Moritz
    • News and commentary on election law statutes and cases
    • Documents from pending and recent cases
    • Developments arranged by issue and state
    • Covers issues including ballot access, voting rights, redistricting, campaign finance
  • Brennan Center for Justice
    • Public policy institute with a focus on voting rights, campaign finance reform, and redistricting
    • Case summaries and the center's briefs and case filings
    • Policy briefs, commentary, news, and a blog on election law and democracy issues
  • Electionline.org
    • Project of the University of Minnesota's Humphrey School of Public Affairs and the Pew Center on the States
    • Information clearinghouse and newsletter on election reform issues
  • Initiative & Referendum Institute
    • Project of the University of Southern California
    • Information and reports on initiatives and referendums by state
    • Ballotwatch with election preview and results
    • Data on state initiatives 1904-2010
  • Pew Center on the States
    • Reports on elections administration, including voter registration and technology, and state elections websites

News and Current Awareness

  • BNA Money and Politics Report
    • News, cases, regulations, and legislation on campaign finance, lobbying, election reform, the FEC, and other topical headings.  Sign up for e-mail alerts of new reports.
  • CQ Weekly
    • Part of the CQ Electronic Library.  Topic headings include Politics & Elections for articles
  • Roll Call
    • Congressional news and information with Congressional election coverage.  Includes fundraising charts and election maps.
  • National Journal
    • Political and campaign news






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