Brian G. Svoboda is an authority on the laws regulating political activity. His work entails recognizing, understanding and serving clients’ strategic and reputational interests, especially when the political stakes are high. A partner in the Political Law practice, Brian helps clients to organize and achieve their political objectives, and defends them when their activities have drawn unwanted controversy.
Campaign Finance Laws and Regulations
In the general counseling he provides to companies, trade associations, political parties, candidates, nonprofit organizations and individuals, Brian advises on all aspects of ethics and campaign finance laws. He helps clients to navigate the increasingly complex rules that govern the political process: federal lobbying disclosure laws; Internal Revenue Service rules on political activity; regulatory and judicial responses to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC; and the tangle of federal, state and local laws that political activity often triggers.
Brian is one of the nation’s leading practitioners before the Federal Election Commission, and he has secured legal protection for high-stakes, high-visibility activities through the FEC’s advisory opinion process. His in-depth understanding of that agency allows him to counsel clients on how to organize their fundraising, spending and communications to comply with FEC rules. Brian has successfully defended many clients in FEC audits and investigations, and in civil litigation against the agency. He also helps clients comply with state and local campaign finance laws, and he has appeared before agencies and courts across the country on campaign finance issues.
Ethics Investigations Counsel and Leadership
Ethics investigations are a significant area of Brian’s experience, and he has been quoted in TIME Magazine on the topic of the Congressional ethics process. Brian has successfully represented several members of Congress in ethics investigations before the U.S. House Committee on Ethics, Office of Congressional Ethics and U.S. Senate Select Committee on Ethics.
A graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law, Brian appeared before representatives of the Council on Europe’s Group of States Against Corruption (GRECO) when they evaluated the transparency of the U.S. campaign finance system. Brian received recognition in 2014 from Super Lawyers and is an active speaker and participant in panel presentations. He has appeared in programs and classes sponsored by the Council on Governmental and Ethics Laws, George Mason Civil Rights Law Journal, George Mason University School of Law and American University Washington College of Law.