- Jun 11, 2014
To many across the nation, politics is a team sport. To these die-hard fans, every call against their team is because of a biased ref or ump and every opponent is an evil low life steroid-taking fraud who skipped the first two races of the Triple Crown. This team sport mentality helps explain the passion, knee-jerk reactions and lack of rational thought that frames many of our political debates. Having spent close to 38 years in Washington working for non-partisan institutions and organizations, and having represented conservative, progressive, Republican and Democratic clients, I also know that there are many who believe that ensuring the integrity of the game is the best form of team loyalty and strive to ensure the game is played fairly and by the rules. Despite what some of those who disagree with our positions occasionally claim, the Campaign Legal Center (CLC) is one such organization.
Federal Court Denies Injunction to Democratic Governors Association, Partially Dismisses Challenge to Connecticut’s Post-Citizens United ReformsJun 10, 2014
Today, the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut denied the Democratic Governors Association’s (DGA) request for a preliminary injunction and partially dismissed the DGA’s challenge to a number of the State of Connecticut’s post-Citizens United campaign finance reforms. The DGA was seeking to make unlimited “independent” expenditures in support of Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s candidacy while at the same time having Governor Malloy fundraise for the DGA outside of Connecticut’s contribution limits and source prohibitions, and in many cases without disclosure.
Legal Center, Connecticut Watchdogs, File Supplemental Brief in Defense of State’s Post-Citizens United Campaign Finance ReformsJun 9, 2014
On Friday, the Campaign Legal Center, joined by three Connecticut watchdog groups, filed a supplemental amici brief in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut urging the court to reject an attempt by the Democratic Governors Association (DGA) to broaden the scope of its recently filed challenge to Connecticut’s campaign finance laws. DGA initially sought to bar the State Elections Enforcement Commission (SEEC) from considering Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy’s fundraising activities for the DGA if questions arise as to whether the DGA’s expenditures for Governor Malloy’s reelection were truly independent of his campaign. Now, the DGA seeks to reinvent its case as a broad attack on all of the rules applicable to organizations whose major purpose is election or defeat of candidates in Connecticut.
- Jun 4, 2014
On June 2, the State of Delaware filed its opening brief with the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, urging the reversal of a lower court decision that preliminarily enjoined Delaware’s disclosure law as applied to a nonprofit group, Delaware Strong Families (DSF). The case, Delaware Strong Families v. Biden, involves a constitutional challenge to Delaware's new electioneering communications law.
- Jun 3, 2014
Campaign Legal Center President Trevor Potter appears on “Washington Watch” this month as the guest of Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC). The two Republicans discussed the role of money in politics in the wake of a string of controversial U.S. Supreme Court decisions overturning longstanding Court precedent and explored potential avenues of reform to the current campaign finance system.
The show will air throughout June on stations across Rep. Jones’ Third Congressional District in North Carolina.
To view June’s Washington Watch, click here.
- Jun 3, 2014
On this month's edition of Washington Watch, Congressman Walter B. Jones is joined by Trevor Potter, the founding president and general counsel of the Campaign Legal Center and former chairman of the Federal Election Commission. Congressman Jones and Mr. Potter discuss the role of money in politics and potential avenues of reform to the current campaign finance system.
- Jun 2, 2014
On June 2nd, Trevor Potter delivered a speech at the Citizens Congress 2014: Restoring Equality in Our Democracy in San Luis Obispo, California. Potter criticizes not only the amount of money spent in federal campaigns, but also where the money comes from and how it is raised. Potter also proposes a system with full participation, with solutions to some of the problems in the current broken system.
- May 20, 2014
Today, in ProtectMarriage.com v. Bowen, the Ninth Circuit rejected a constitutional challenge to disclosure requirements in California’s Political Reform Act that require state ballot measure committees to identify their campaign contributors above a $100 reporting threshold. The groups that brought the case—which raised and spent tens of millions of dollars in 2008 in support of Proposition 8, a successful statewide ballot initiative that has since been invalidated— sought to overturn these disclosure requirements as unconstitutional, both facially and as applied to them, on the basis of claimed “harassment” directed at their campaign donors. The Court of Appeals upheld the district court’s determination that the laws are facially valid but did not reach the merits of the as-applied claims, finding instead that the intervening disclosure of the groups’ contributors rendered their appeal non-justifiable.
- May 19, 2014
Today, the Supreme Court denied certiorari in Free Speech v. FEC, letting stand a decision by the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold FEC rules and policies relating to the determination of “political committee” status and, by extension, the registration and reporting requirements applicable to such committees.