Monday’s Political Law Links

HYPOCRISY ON GORSUCH.   FB.  “The head of a liberal dark money group criticized Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch because of his stance on political disclosures and Citizens United.

OCE ON REP.   Politico.  “Rep. Duncan Hunter is under criminal investigation by the Justice Department over alleged campaign finance violations, the House Ethics Committee announced Thursday.”

CA:  MAILER WARNING.  MN.  “The commission found that envelopes for a mass mailing Fine sent to residents during the November election cycle did not properly identify the entity paying for the mailing on the envelope.”

CA:  FOREIGN NATIONAL GIVING.  SDUT.  “While the San Diego trial of wealthy Mexican businessman José Susumo Azano Matsura and three others ended more than six months ago with guilty verdicts, no one has been sentenced yet as the case continues to be tied up in post-trial motions.”

MD:  ETHICS OVERHAUL.  BS.  “The Maryland House of Delegates unanimously passed a bill Friday that would update the state’s ethics laws. It would require more disclosure of lawmakers’ conflicts of interest and put some new limits on legislators’ advocacy for private businesses.”

MO:  THANKS FOR REFORM.   JCL.  “Senate and House leaders had different approaches to campaign finance reform, and the compromise they forged is a strong one.”

NY:  NOT GUILTY PLEA.  NYP.  “An upstate state senator and his predecessor were arraigned Thursday on charges that they funneled campaign cash to one senator’s wife and to a former staffer and hid the payments by filing false paperwork at the Board of Elections.”

TX:  ALCOHOL REGULATORS.  TT.  “No agency can kill a buzz quicker than the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, but behind the scenes state liquor regulators have shown they know how to party — all on the tab of taxpayers and members of an industry they oversee.”

WI:  REVOLVING DOOR TARGET.  DP.  “Former Wisconsin lawmakers would be prohibited from becoming lobbyists for at least a year after they leave office under a bill introduced by a bipartisan group of 40 state lawmakers.”


Federalist Paper bans and more political law links for Wed.

BANNING THE FEDERALIST PAPERS.  WE.  “Based on the Obama administration’s clumsy arguments against what became the Citizens United decision before the Supreme Court, tracts like the Federalist Papers might have been banned from publication altogether. Malcolm Stewart, President Obama’s deputy solicitor general, argued that the federal government had the power to prevent publication of partisan books about candidates for office in the name of campaign finance law.”

CA:  WHAT TAPES SHOW.   SFE.  “Recorded conversations between an FBI agent and fundraisers for Mayor Ed Lee’s 2011 campaign heard in court Tuesday seemed to indicate the mayor knew nothing about the illegal contributions supposedly raised to retire his campaign debt.”

FL:  SURPRISE, YOU’RE A LOBBYIST!   Lex.  “As you can see, the lobbyist net is cast widely. So how do you protect yourself and your clients?”

GA:  ETHICS COMMITTEE SUED.  AJC.  “Former DeKalb County Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton filed another lawsuit Tuesday against the DeKalb Board of Ethics, saying it should be dissolved.”

IL:  CHICAGO LOBBYING.   CT.  “Now, a Chicago Board of Ethics that had long been viewed as toothless is reviewing details on potential lobbying activity it didn’t have the wherewithal to uncover itself because it lacked investigative power. The Emanuel-appointed panel, which is evaluating the emails, enforces the city’s broad lobbying law that covers many types of contact with government officials. The ethics board determines whether individuals have violated the rules, and it handed out a record $90,000 fine last month in the first case to emerge since the emails became public.”

MA:  FINE FOR VIOLATIONS.  BG.  “A Brockton-based construction firm and its owner have agreed to pay a $150,000 penalty after illegally using company funds to funnel campaign donations to such leading political figures as Governor Charlie Baker, Mayor Martin J. Walsh, and former governor Deval Patrick.”

NC:  EDITORIAL ON FUND.   NO.  “A nonprofit group, recently formed, called Moving North Carolina Forward, falls under a category of ‘social welfare nonprofits’ that will allow it to carry out political activities without the rules that apply to PACs, or political action committees.”

WI:  COUNCIL FOR REFORM.  GBP.  “The City Council unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday supporting a constitutional amendment to allow limits on campaign contributions.”


Tuesday’s Political Law links are here

APPEAL REJECTED.   PHIL.  “The Supreme Court on Monday rejected Sen. Bob Menendez’s request that it take up his federal corruption case, dealing a blow to the New Jersey Democrat’s hope of having key evidence and charges dismissed before his trial begins.”

KLOBUCHAR FOCUS.  WP.  “Sen. Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), who is among the Democratic senators talked about as a potential 2020 presidential candidate, said much of her questioning of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch would focus on his rulings on campaign finance laws.”

MT:  SHERIFF FINED.   BDC.  “Missoula County Sheriff Terry ‘T.J.’ McDermott will pay a $936 fine as a result of a campaign complaint.”

PA:  MORE FROM EX-TREASURER.   TI.  “Under questioning by a sometimes-combative Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Consiglio, McCord acknowledged that he had taken various steps or made various offers to help campaign contributors, or potential contributors, violating the law.”

WV:  LIMITS CONSIDERED.  CG.  “The Senate Judiciary Committee looked over a bill Monday that would increase campaign donation limits in West Virginia elections and decrease some disclosure requirements.”

ISR:  SUPER PAC LAW.   JP.  “The law defines different stages in which an organization is required to report to the state comptroller the cost of its elections-related activity. It also limits the funding of such organizations during the elections period and determines that a breaching of the law is a criminal offense – as stated in the Party Funding Law.”