1787's goal is to have a presidential candidate, a vice presidential candidate, and multiple congressional candidates on the ballot in every state by the 2024 election. Win or lose, the number of votes 1787 receives is extremely important because, in many states, 1787 will automatically be on the ballot in the following years if we receive a certain percentage of the vote in 2024.
Ballot access rules vary widely from state to state, but most require petition signatures for a new party to be placed on a ballot. For example, in the 2020 election in Texas, 1787 would have had to submit the signatures of roughly 90,000 registered voters in order to be on the general election ballot. If we had received at least 5 percent of the vote in Texas in 2020, our nominees would be on the 2024 general election without having to get the signatures again. Although it's rare, there are a few states that make ballot access much easier. In Colorado, for example, we would have only had to fill out three forms and pay a $1,000 filing fee to be on the 2020 general election ballot.
See our ballot access progress here.
Once 1787 is considered a national party committee by the Federal Election Commission (FEC) — which will happen when we "nominate qualified candidates for president and various congressional offices in numerous states” — there are excellent opportunities to create financial leverage for our campaigns (the information below comes directly from the FEC):
Primary Matching Funds
A campaign for the office of president will be eligible to receive primary matching funds. Our presidential candidate must establish eligibility by showing broad-based public support. He or she must raise more than $5,000 in each of at least 20 states (that is, over $100,000). Although an individual may contribute up to a specific limit to a primary candidate, only a maximum of $250 of each individual’s contribution is counted in determining whether a candidate has met the $5,000 threshold in each state. This means that a candidate must receive contributions from a minimum of 20 contributors in each of at least 20 states in order to establish eligibility for primary matching funds.
General Election Funds
Public funding for major party presidential nominees in the general election takes the form of a grant of $20 million plus the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). To be eligible to receive public funds, the presidential nominee of a major party must agree to limit spending to the amount of the grant and may not accept private contributions for the campaign. Candidates may spend an additional $50,000 from their own personal funds, which does not count against the expenditure limit. In 1976, each major party nominee received $21.8 million. By 2008 (the last year a major party candidate chose to accept a general election grant), that amount had grown to $84.1 million. (In 2020, the general election grant would have been $103.7 million.)
Minor party candidates and new party candidates may become eligible for partial public funding of their general election campaigns. A minor party candidate is the nominee of a party whose candidate received between five and 25 percent of the total popular vote in the preceding presidential election. The amount of public funding to which a minor party candidate is entitled is based on the ratio of the party's popular vote in the preceding presidential election to the average popular vote of the two major party candidates in that election. A new party candidate receives partial public funding after the election if he or she receives five percent or more of the vote. The entitlement is based on the ratio of the new party candidate's popular vote in the current election to the average popular vote of the two major party candidates in the election.