(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.
Groups from Across Political Spectrum Urge Congress to Save Office of Congressional Ethics at Capitol Hill Event: Statement of Meredith McGehee, Policy DirectorDec 2, 2010
At a Capitol Hill press conference this morning a coalition of 10 groups, including the Campaign Legal Center, Judicial Watch, Taxpayers for Common Sense, National Taxpayers Union and a number of reform groups urged the incoming House leadership of the 112th Congress to continue the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) and to oppose any efforts to weaken or undermine the office.
Supreme Court Accepts Challenge to Arizona Public Financing Law: Statement of The Campaign Legal Center & Democracy 21Nov 29, 2010
While it is potentially problematic any time the activist Roberts Court takes on a campaign finance case, the issues before the Court in the Arizona public financing case (McComish v Bennett) are narrow.
- Nov 24, 2010
Today’s verdict was an important victory for our democracy. It proves that even highly placed government officials are accountable for their violations of law. Our campaign finance laws are important to our system of self-government, and laundering money in an attempt to evade those laws undermines our democratic process. In moving money around in order to use illegal corporate funds to elect candidates in Texas, Tom DeLay displayed a startling contempt for our laws and our democratic process. Initially, he even bragged about what he had done. He should be punished accordingly.
Today the Campaign Legal Center and other reform groups urged Members of Congress to co-sponsor and push for passage of the “Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act” (STOCK Act) designed to prevent congressional insider trading. In separate letters to the full House and Senate the groups encouraged Members you to join as co-sponsors and help pass the STOCK Act expeditiously. In the House the STOCK Act (H.R. 1148) was introduced by Reps. Timothy Walz (D-MN) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY). A companion bill (S. 1871) has been introduced the Senate side Sens. Scott Brown (R-MA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) and another is expected shortly from Sen. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).
At a press conference this morning in front of the U.S. Capitol, six reform groups called on Congress to pass a ‘disclosure only’ version of the DISCLOSE Act during the ‘lame duck’ session of the 111th Congress. Such a stripped-down bill would take away the issues that drew criticism from opponents of the legislation. At the event Public Citizen also unveiled a new study of the significant drop in donor disclosure by outside groups during the 2010 election cycle.
Unrestricted corporate speech in elections without disclosure of those funding the speech is contrary to the Court’s theory in Citizens United v. FEC, which paired corporate First Amendment speech rights with the virtues of disclosure of the sources of such speech—disclosure to shareholders and to the general public.
- Nov 16, 2010
The abuses of the earmark system has become so egregious that Congress is left with virtually no alternative but an outright ban on the unending stream of handouts to favored lobbyists and contributors. But it didn’t have to be this way.
- Nov 16, 2010
Given the multiple violations which Rep. Charles Rangel has publicly admitted to committing, a simple reprimand is an insufficient penalty. At the same time, expulsion is not on the table, and appropriately so. There was no evidence of egregious self-enrichment or specific corruption.
- Nov 8, 2010
Right through to Election Day, confusion reigned among the public and the press about the rules governing the estimated $4 billion-plus that was spent on the 2010 federal races.