- Apr 18, 2012
Late yesterday, the Campaign Legal Center filed an amicus brief in ProtectMarriage.com v. Bowen in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in support of disclosure provisions in California’s Political Reform Act. The brief urges the court to affirm a district court decision upholding the state ballot measure committee contribution disclosure requirements.
IRS: Agency Urged to Curb Crossroads GPS Abuse of Tax Status in Wake of Secret $10 million Contribution to Run Attack AdsApr 17, 2012
In a letter sent to the IRS today, Democracy 21 and the Campaign Legal Center again called on the agency to investigate and take appropriate enforcement action against Crossroads GPS for its apparent misuse of a privileged tax status. The letter specifically calls attention to a secret $10 million dollar contribution to the 501(c)(4) group to run attack ads that The Washington Post recently brought to light.
- Apr 16, 2012The Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United allowed them. Political candidates rely on them. And Stephen Colbert parodies them. But as a former chair of the Federal Election Commission and the lawyer behind Colbert’s super PAC — Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow — I find that most people don’t understand the role that these largely unaccountable organizations play in American politics. As the GOP primary race draws to a close, let’s take a look at some common misconceptions about groups powerful enough to evade traditional limits with a single bound.
- Apr 12, 2012
A dozen government integrity groups yesterday asked President Obama to appoint new commissioners to the completely dysfunctional Federal Election Commission (FEC) and requested a response guaranteed by the White House regarding the successful petition drive.
- Apr 10, 2012
The Supreme Court, in its landmark 2010 Citizens United decision, unleashed unlimited special interest corporate spending in our elections but assured us that any threat of corruption stemming from this spending would be eliminated by robust campaign finance disclosure.
The Court wrote: “The First Amendment protects political speech [i.e., spending]; and disclosure permits citizens and shareholders to react to the speech of corporate entities in a proper way. This transparency enables the electorate to make informed decisions and give proper weight to different speakers and messages.” Eight of the Court’s nine Justices signed the portion of the decision upholding the challenged disclosure law. But the promised disclosure never materialized.
- Mar 29, 2012
The Campaign Legal Center yesterday filed an amicus brief in Doe v. Reed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in support of a Washington State disclosure law in an as-applied challenge after the U.S. Supreme Court already ruled the law constitutional in a facial challenge in 2010.
- Mar 28, 2012
The petition for a writ of certiorari has been filed in American Tradition Partnership, Inc. (ATP) v. Bullock. With the filing, the U.S. Supreme Court is now presented with an opportunity to re-examine its ill-considered Citizens United ruling.
The practical realities of Citizens United have proven a far cry from the comparative utopia imagined in Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion. Influence buying in Washington has been even easier in the wake of the controversial decision and there is little resemblance to the majority opinion’s alternate universe where contributions are disclosed, coordination doesn’t happen and independent expenditures can’t possibly lead to even the appearance of corruption.
- Mar 28, 2012
Campaign Legal Center President Trevor Potter submitted a statement on the DISCLOSE Act of 2012 (S. 2219) at the request of the Senate Rules Committee. Because Potter was unavailable to testify due to a prior out-of-town commitment, the statement will be entered into the record at the Rules Committee hearing on the bill to be held on March 29, 2012.
- Mar 28, 2012
In a sweeping decision issued late yesterday, a Texas Court upheld numerous Texas campaign finance laws that had been challenged on constitutional grounds in Texas Democratic Party, et al. v. King Street Patriots, et al. Judge John K. Dietz of the District Court of Travis County Texas issued the final summary judgment in the challenge to provisions of Texas campaign finance law, including the state restriction on corporate contributions to candidates, officeholders and political committees, and the disclosure and organizational requirements applicable to political committees.