An Archive for Political Ads?


Sacramento Bee/Andrew Sheeler

The Sacramento Bee

By Andrew Sheeler



Following recommendations of the Fair Political Practice Commission’s Task Force on Digital Transparency, Sen. Josh Newman, D-Fullerton, has introduced a bill – SB 921 – that would create an online archive of every digital political ad employed by a political campaign or committee.

“For all of their obvious impact, it’s easy to forget that digital political ads are seemingly here one moment and gone the next. SB 921 will give the public the ability to hold the creators of digital political advertisements accountable, in terms of both their assertions and their funding,” Newman said in a statement. “Transparency and accountability go hand in hand with promoting honesty in political campaigns.”

According to Newman’s office, the use of digital ads has risen dramatically. In the 2015-16 election cycle, digital media accounted for just 2% to 3% of political ad spending, while in 2020 it rose to 18%, according to the senator’s office.

“In this fast-changing digital world, a California political ad archive would provide California voters an easy way to find out who is responsible for each ad they receive,” FPPC Chair Richard C. Miadich said in a statement. “The FPPC is grateful for Senator Newman’s support of this concept, which will help California to continue being a national leader in campaign finance transparency.”