Article 3. Code Of Fair Campaign Practices of California Elections Code >> Division 20. >> Chapter 5. >> Article 3.
At the time an individual is issued his or her declaration
of candidacy, nomination papers, or any other paper evidencing an
intention to be a candidate for public office, the elections official
shall give the individual a blank form of the code and a copy of
this chapter. The elections official shall inform each candidate for
public office that subscription to the code is voluntary.
In the case of a committee making an independent expenditure, as
defined in Section 82031 of the Government Code, the Secretary of
State shall provide a blank form and a copy of this chapter to the
individual filing, in accordance with Title 9 (commencing with
Section 81000) of the Government Code, an initial campaign statement
on behalf of the committee.
The text of the code shall read, as follows:
"CODE OF FAIR CAMPAIGN PRACTICES
There are basic principles of decency, honesty, and fair play
which every candidate for public office in the State of California
has a moral obligation to observe and uphold in order that, after
vigorously contested but fairly conducted campaigns, our citizens may
exercise their constitutional right to a free and untrammeled choice
and the will of the people may be fully and clearly expressed on the
(1) I SHALL CONDUCT my campaign openly and publicly, discussing
the issues as I see them, presenting my record and policies with
sincerity and frankness, and criticizing without fear or favor the
record and policies of my opponents or political parties that merit
(2) I SHALL NOT USE OR PERMIT the use of character defamation,
whispering campaigns, libel, slander, or scurrilous attacks on any
candidate or his or her personal or family life.
(3) I SHALL NOT USE OR PERMIT any appeal to negative prejudice
based on a candidate's actual or perceived race, religious creed,
color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental
disability, medical condition, marital status, age, sexual
orientation, sex, including gender identity, or any other
characteristic set forth in Section 12940 of the Government Code, or
association with another person who has any of the actual or
perceived characteristics set forth in Section 12940 of the
(4) I SHALL NOT USE OR PERMIT any dishonest or unethical practice
that tends to corrupt or undermine our American system of free
elections, or that hampers or prevents the full and free expression
of the will of the voters including acts intended to hinder or
prevent any eligible person from registering to vote, enrolling to
vote, or voting.
(5) I SHALL NOT coerce election help or campaign contributions for
myself or for any other candidate from my employees.
(6) I SHALL IMMEDIATELY AND PUBLICLY REPUDIATE support deriving
from any individual or group that resorts, on behalf of my candidacy
or in opposition to that of my opponent, to the methods and tactics
that I condemn. I shall accept responsibility to take firm action
against any subordinate who violates any provision of this code or
the laws governing elections.
(7) I SHALL DEFEND AND UPHOLD the right of every qualified
American voter to full and equal participation in the electoral
I, the undersigned, candidate for election to public office in the
State of California or treasurer or chairperson of a committee
making any independent expenditures, hereby voluntarily endorse,
subscribe to, and solemnly pledge myself to conduct my campaign in
accordance with the above principles and practices."
The Secretary of State shall print, or cause to be printed,
blank forms of the code. The Secretary of State shall supply the
forms to the elections officials in quantities and at times requested
by the elections officials.
The elections official shall accept, at all times prior to
the election, all completed forms that are properly subscribed to by
a candidate for public office and shall retain them for public
inspection until 30 days after the election.
Every code subscribed to by a candidate for public office
pursuant to this chapter is a public record open for public
In no event shall a candidate for public office be required
to subscribe to or endorse the code.