(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.
- Nov 29, 2017
“This is not a Democratic or Republican issue; it’s a democracy issue with a lower case d,” said Danielle Lang, a Campaign Legal Center lawyer who spent last week in Alabama holding these clinics.
“A bipartisan majority of the Alabama Legislature passed a law defining for the first time in decades who has the right to vote and who does not,” she wrote in an email. ”... Pursuant to that law, we are making sure that every lawful voter knows about their rights since the Secretary of State has done a dismal job of that. All candidates should want to compete on a fair playing field where all eligible voters are able to participate.”
- Nov 29, 2017
A political move by a relatively small player in the campaign, though, is poised to force changes to those rules. The Rio Grande Foundation, along with the conservative Goldwater Institute out of Arizona, has sued the city over its determination that the $7,500 production and distribution of a video decrying the proposed tax required disclosure of donors.
The city is faced with the potential of a court battle that city attorneys think they are likely to lose, and officials appear ready to back down. The City Council is set to vote next month on a bill that would completely eliminate the requirement for "independent expenditure groups" to report on contributions that pay for ballot measure advocacy.
- Nov 28, 2017
CLC is hosting a call on December 14 to talk about the policy reform and litigation nationwide to support and defend strong transparency laws, contribution limits and public financing measures.
- Nov 28, 2017
“For people who are able to register in this election, I think a lot of them will probably feel like their vote really matters because it is closely contested,” she said. “They can feel like in an election where they are first able to participate, it is one of consequence.”
- Nov 27, 2017
The special counsel is facing the biggest test of his career. I’m referring not to Robert S.Mueller III but to Henry Kerner of the Office of Special Counsel (OSC), the small agency that investigates Hatch Act violations. That law prohibits executive branch employees from using their government positions to influence elections, which is precisely what presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway did last week. Whether Kerner will enforce the law is another matter.
- Nov 26, 2017
CLC's Fellow, Blair Bowie, appeared on CBS 19 discussing CLC's efforts to register voters in Alabama.
- Nov 26, 2017
“It is fairly obvious that there is a general lack of respect for the ethics laws and the values they represent that starts at the top of the administration,” said Larry Noble, senior director, ethics and general counsel of the Campaign Legal Center. “It is seen in the president’s conflicts of interest, actions and statements, the number of times Jared Kushner has had to amend his ethics reports and the conflicts of interest that plague many of the president’s appointees.”
- Nov 23, 2017
Shaub left his post in July to become senior director of ethics at the Campaign Legal Center, a nonprofit group legal advocacy group that also is pursuing ethics cases against the Trump administration.
In his 15 years with the Office of Government Ethics, “we were basically standing on the street corner, waving our arms and holding up signs, saying ‘Hey look over here: Ethics!’ And we couldn’t get anyone’s attention.”
“Now, people care,” he said.
- Nov 22, 2017
Shaub, now a senior director for ethics with the Campaign Legal Center, compared the situation to an Obama administration incident last year in which Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro spoke during a Yahoo News interview about Hillary Clinton's chances of winning and his own chances of being named as her running mate. The Office of Special Counsel concluded that Castro had violated the Hatch Act because the interview was arranged through official channels and devoted to policy topics, and because he appeared to be speaking in his official capacity.