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The FEC effectively went dark as a decision-making body on New Year’s Day because only two of its six members are seated and four are needed for a quorum. While the FEC staff of lawyers, investigators and auditors remain on the job, there are not enough available votes to authorize an investigation, assess a penalty for campaign law violations, or disburse matching federal campaign funds to qualified candidates. Seven such applications are pending from presidential candidates, and the Democratic and Republican parties also are expecting $1 million each for their conventions.