- Jan 13, 2012
Last night Campaign Legal Center President Trevor Potter appeared again on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” as host Stephen Colbert’s “personal lawyer” in a continuing discussion of the Colbert Super PAC's legal issues. The segment illustrates the absurdities of the nation’s campaign finance laws. As Colbert weighs a run for “President of the United States of South Carolina”, Potter hands him the papers to transfer control of his Super PAC to fellow Comedy Central host Jon Stewart.
- Dec 9, 2011
Last week, Campaign Legal Center President Trevor Potter sat down with Ross Ramsey of The Texas Tribune to discuss the state of play in campaign finance. Potter describes system “in huge flux” that bears almost no resemblance to the system of full disclosure imagined by Justice Kennedy in his majority opinion in Citizens United v. FEC.
- Dec 5, 2011
Polls place public approval of Congress at near 10% - an all-time low - and President Obama's at about 41%, well below the average since Franklin Roosevelt. Should Americans be concerned?
Some might say no. It’s politics as usual - a confirmation of Mark Twain’s observation more than a century ago: Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.
- Nov 9, 2011
Stephen Colbert is encouraging supporters of his Colbert Super PAC to file public comments with the FEC with regards to the Advisory Opinion Request (AOR) filed by American Crossroads. The Karl Rove-affiliated Super PAC is seeking clearance to run ads starring the candidates themselves without reporting them as ‘coordinated’ with the candidates.
Trevor Potter Helps Stephen Colbert File Comments in Support of American Crossroads’ Request to Run “Issue Ads” that Are Coordinated with Candidates in Reality but not in LawNov 8, 2011
Campaign Legal Center President Trevor Potter appeared again last night on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” as host Stephen Colbert’s “personal lawyer.” This time Potter helped Colbert file comments in support of an FEC advisory opinion request by American Crossroads in which the controversial Super PAC seeks to run ads like those being run by the Nebraska Democratic Party in support of Senator Ben Nelson, featuring Senator Nelson reading a script, yet allegedly not ‘coordinated’ with Senator Nelson.
- Nov 7, 2011
Last night Jack Abramoff was the focus of a "60 Minutes" piece on CBS. After serving his time in a federal prison, the infamous lobbyist offers his take on the influence game in Washington which, he assures correspondent Lesley Stahl, "hasn't been cleaned up at all."
- Oct 18, 2011
Last night, Legal Center Associate Counsel Tara Malloy appeared on a panel on the PBS News Hour to discuss the impact of Super PACs and 501(c)(4)s on the 2012 election. Speaking with Gwen Ifill of the News Hour and a representative of the Heritage Foundation, Malloy repeatedly laid bare the myth of the ‘independence’ of these shadow committees. She points out that the Federal Election Commission has laid out a virtual roadmap for evasion of campaign finance laws in the wake of the judicial decisions in recent years based on the faulty theory that campaign contributions can corrupt, but that millions of dollars given to ostensibly independent shadow campaigns cannot.
Colbert’s “Money Laundering” Reference Leads to Ham Headed “Apology” to Karl Rove as the Colbert Report Keeps the Pressure up on Undisclosed Money in PoliticsOct 7, 2011
Apparently Karl Rove and his attorney did not see comedian Stephen Colbert’s creation last week of a 501(c)(4) like their Crossroads GPS as the sincerest form of flattery. Rove’s lawyer sent an e-mail to Colbert’s lawyer, Trevor Potter, and last night the host of The Colbert Report issued a clarification concerning “Ham Rove ” and his 501(c)(4). Colbert stated that that he was glad Rove had made it clear he was not laundering “dirty money” through his Super PAC, but instead keeping it dirty and undisclosed in his 501(c)(4).
- Oct 4, 2011
It is bad enough that a majority of the current Supreme Court made the nonsensical decision in 2010 that, at least when it comes to politics, corporations should be treated the same as individuals. The Court reasoned that "speech restrictions based on the identity of the speaker" are unconstitutional – at least as to independent campaign-related spending. So, just as individuals are allowed to pay for attack ads, now corporations can run these ads using their treasury funds. The highly controversial Citizens United decision overturned a century's worth of law and jurisprudence, and will go down in history as one of the most damaging and dangerous since the pro-slavery Dred Scott decision.