(photo courtesy of Colbert Report)
Campaign Legal Center President (and attorney at the law firm Caplin & Drysdale) Trevor Potter played an important role in the last election cycle: that of "personal lawyer" to comedian Stephen Colbert on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report. Mr. Colbert took on the absurdities of some of current campaign finance law and turned them into a running parody on his show this election cycle, with the help of Trevor. To watch video highlights of Trevor Potter's appearances on The Colbert Report, click here.
Office of Congressional Ethics to Continue in 112th Congress: Statement of J. Gerald Hebert, Campaign Legal Center Executive DirectorDec 23, 2010
We commend Speaker-designee John Boehner (R-OH) for including the continuation of the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) in the draft of the operating rules for the House for the 112th Congress. The OCE has faced opposition and criticism from Members from both parties because it has brought a degree of transparency and accountability to the House ethics process that had long been missing.
- Dec 22, 2010
Today, the Campaign Legal Center, along with Democracy 21, filed an amici brief with the Eighth Circuit in Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) v. Swanson. In the suit, the plaintiffs rely on the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Citizens United v. FEC to attack Minnesota’s restriction on corporate contributions to state candidates and political parties, and its state disclosure requirements for corporate independent expenditures.
U.S. House: Reformers Call on Speaker-designee Boehner to Maintain Strong Ethics Rules & OCE Established in 110th CongressDec 21, 2010
Today reform groups called on Speaker-designee John Boehner (R-OH) to preserve and strengthen the strong new rules adopted by the House in 2007, including the creation of the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE). The new rules were instituted in response to a series of high-profile scandals involving Members and their staffs and the letter stressed that the rules and the beleaguered OCE should not be weakened in any way.
- Dec 17, 2010
A pattern of intimidation of elderly African-American voters continues in Texarkana (Bowie County) Texas. It turns out some of the same cast of characters is involved and are now affiliating themselves with the Tea Party movement. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is investigating but, unfortunately, the harassment has continued unabated.
- Dec 16, 2010
Earlier today, a federal judge in Washington, DC, dismissed a lawsuit filed by a group of private citizens challenging the Voting Rights Act in Laroque v. Holder. The Legal Center’s Executive Director J. Gerald Hebert said of the decision: “The court today got it exactly right in granting the motions to dismiss. That the plaintiffs lacked standing to sue was never in doubt.”
- Dec 16, 2010
There has been a lot of consternation from a number of organizations over the last year about whether the California Citizens Redistricting Commission would be a diverse group. Well, the final six were selected this week and hopefully the skeptics who have been critical of the Commission at every turn will now turn their attention to making the redistricting process the most transparent and meaningful for California’s diverse population.
DOJ: Dropped Investigation of Rep. Jerry Lewis Just Latest in Long List of Disappointments from Justice Department: Statement of J. Gerald Hebert, Campaign Legal Center Executive DirectorDec 6, 2010The message being sent by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), especially its Criminal Division's Public Integrity Section, seems to be that Members of Congress actually are above the law or at least most laws. The announcement that the investigation into Representative Jerry Lewis's conduct had been dropped is just the latest in a long list of high-profile investigations that began with seemingly damning sets of allegations and ended with a whimper.
- Dec 6, 2010
Several years ago, it appeared that a number of trials were on the horizon for Members of Congress. But outside of those caught literally and figuratively with cold hard cash, only congressional staffers and lobbyists have been held accountable, and even many of them appear to have gotten off scot-free.