Appearances, Publications & Speeches
- Mar 21, 2016
With the presidential primaries in full swing, outside groups regularly outspend candidates' national campaigns in advertising and advocacy. Super PACs and "dark money" groups are running ever-increasing numbers of television ads - without having to reveal to viewers the sources of their money.
- Mar 1, 2016
On February 11, CLC Policy Director Meredith McGehee spoke at the National Archive's panel on "Finance on Political Campaigns." Joining in the discussion for were former Senators Bill Brock (R-TN), Bennett Johnston (D-LA), Tom Petri (R-WI) and Tim Roemer (D-IN).
To watch the video, click here.
- Feb 10, 2016
As 2015 came to a close, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) — the agency charged with enforcing federal campaign finance laws — finally fined "Restore Our Future" super PAC $50,000 for violating laws restricting coordination with candidate campaigns, in response to a complaint filed by the Campaign Legal Center in 2012. Not only did it take the FEC nearly four years to resolve the matter, but the fine amounted to a slap on the wrist for the more than $4 million in illegal spending by the super PAC.
Jim Renacci's bipartisan Federal Election Commission reform effort is sorely needed (Cleveland Plain Dealer)Jan 29, 2016
Is it a waste of taxpayer money for an agency to exist, but so seriously fail in its mission that its own chair described it as "worse than dysfunctional?" Yes, it is—and American taxpayers deserve better. The Federal Election Commission is failing to fulfill even the basic functions of its job.
- Jan 11, 2016
In these days, when there seems to be almost limitless information available at the tap of your finger, what would drive anyone to try to hide information that is required to be in plain sight?
- Jan 8, 2016
During consideration of the 2015 Omnibus budget bill, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) unsuccessfully tried to insert a rider to eliminate coordinated spending limits for political parties. He lost because of opposition from an unlikely coalition -- most (though not all) Democrats and some Tea Party Republicans who don't trust their party's establishment. Sen. McConnell made this move under the guise of "strengthening the political parties but in reality, it would have provided yet another avenue for big money to enter into American campaigns.
- Oct 30, 2015
Dennis Hastert’s professional legacy, like his personal one, is in tatters. His time on Capitol Hill helped to undermine the reputation of the body he led as Speaker and the reverberations are still being felt today. The so-called “Hastert Rule” is inextricably linked to the chaos currently engulfing the House Republican caucus and the blind eye he turned toward ethical abuses continues to dog his fellow Representatives. These legacies have damaged the House as an institution but can and should be repaired by the new Speaker.
- Sep 17, 2015
On June 25, 2015, Representatives Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Jim Renacci (R-OH), John Carney (D-DE) and Lou Barletta (R-PA) introduced H.R. 2931, “Restoring Integrity to America’s Elections Act,” a bill that seeks to restructure the FEC.
The Rise and Fall of Mario Biaggi: Reminder of Why the Illegal Gratuities Statute Should be Revived (The Huffington Post)Jul 6, 2015
Many readers probably overlooked the recent obituary of disgraced former U.S. Rep. Mario Biaggi (D-NY). But the rise and fall of this former policeman who died at the age of 97 serves as an object lesson for aspiring politicians and makes a compelling case for resurrecting one of the most useful tools to fight political corruption--the illegal gratuities statute.
- Jun 1, 2015
Even though the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) has done much over the past seven years to bolster the integrity and credibility of the House ethics process, some members of the House have resented the office since its inception. Created after a series of scandals shamed the House, OCE is charged with determining if an allegation of an ethics violation by a House member or staffer warrants further investigation by the House Ethics Committee. OCE has an established record of fair investigations and bipartisan cooperation that have made House members wary of condemning OCE publicly. However, their surrogates and white-collar defense attorneys have attacked the office with increased vehemence. Take, for example, the most recent salvo against OCE.