Standing Rules of the United States Senate, Rule XL

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Rule XL of the Standing Rules of the United States Senate, established by the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration, governs a Senator's use of the franking privilege and radio or television studios provided by either the Senate or House when he or she is a candidate for office and regulating storage of certain data on Senate computer systems used by a Senator.

Text of Rule XL[edit]

  1. A Senator or an individual who is a candidate for nomination for election, or election, to the Senate may not use the frank for any mass mailing (as defined in section 3210(a)(6)(E)2 of title 39, United States Code) if such mass mailing is mailed at or delivered to any postal facility less than sixty days immediately before the date of any primary or general election (whether regular, special, or runoff) in which the Senator is a candidate for public office or the individual is a candidate for Senator, unless the candidacy of the Senator in such election is uncontested.
  2. A Senator shall use only official funds of the Senate, including his official Senate allowances, to purchase paper, to print, or to prepare any mass mailing material which is to be sent out under the frank.
  3. (a) When a Senator disseminates information under the frank by a mass mailing (as defined in section 3210(a)(6)(E) of title 39, United States Code), the Senator shall register quarterly with the Secretary of the Senate such mass mailings. Such registration shall be made by filing with the Secretary a copy of the matter mailed and providing, on a form supplied by the Secretary, a description of the group or groups of persons to whom the mass mailing was mailed.
    (b) The Secretary of the Senate shall promptly make available for public inspection and copying a copy of the mail matter registered, and a description of the group or groups of persons to whom the mass mailing was mailed.
  4. Nothing in this rule shall apply to any mailing under the frank which is (a) in direct response to inquiries or requests from persons to whom the matter is mailed; (b) addressed to colleagues in Congress or to government officials (whether Federal, State, or local); or (c) consists entirely of news releases to the communications media.
  5. The Senate computer facilities shall not be used (a) to store, maintain, or otherwise process any lists or categories of lists of names and addresses identifying the individuals included in such lists as campaign workers or contributors, as members of a political party, or by any other partisan political designation, (b) to produce computer printouts except as authorized by user guides approved by the Committee on Rules and Administration, or (c) to produce mailing labels for mass mailings, or computer tapes and discs, for use other than in service facilities maintained and operated by the Senate or under contract to the Senate. The Committee on Rules and Administration shall prescribe such regulations not inconsistent with the purposes of this paragraph as it determines necessary to carry out such purposes.
  6. (a) The radio and television studios provided by the Senate or by the House of Representatives may not be used by a Senator or an individual who is a candidate for nomination for election, or election, to the Senate less than sixty days immediately before the date of any primary or general election (whether regular, special, or runoff) in which that Senator is a candidate for public office or that individual is a candidate for Senator, unless the candidacy of the Senator in such election is uncontested.
    (b) This paragraph shall not apply if the facilities are to be used at the request of, and at the expense of, a licensed broadcast organization or an organization exempt from taxation under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954.