Super PACs, state and local ethics case developments, and more political law links

LDA ENFORCEMENT ALERT.  I couldn’t make COGEL this year, but there’s a report that Ken Gross announced that DOJ made him aware of a $45,000 DOJ settlement with an unnamed lobbying firm, the first in years in this area.  Stay tuned.

SUPER PAC PUSH.  Politico.  “The top two Democrats in the Senate, Harry Reid and Dick Durbin, and nearly 20 others are headlining a December breakfast fundraiser for Majority PAC, the Senate Democrat-focused super PAC, according to an invitation obtained by POLITICO.”

GINGRICH AND COMPLIANCE.  An anonymous campaign finance lawyer is cited as the source for a blog report here.

GINGRICH DEBT.  The Post.  “Even as he surges ahead in the polls, Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich is struggling to get out from under a mountain of debt from luxury jets and other pricey expenses racked up in the early weeks of his campaign.”

DUFFY’S RESTRICT ACT.  Why should The STOCK Act get all the news?  Rep. Sean Duffy’s release on The RESTRICT Act is here.  More hereHere‘s a Times report on yesterday’s developments:  “Democrats and Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday advocated new restrictions on insider trading to help lift waning public trust in Congress.”

UPDATE ON ALLEGED ILLEGAL LOBBYING CASE.  Here.  “Ghulam Nabi Fai, a Kashmiri origin man charged in July and held under house arrest for illegally lobbying for Pakistan would appear before U.S. District Judge LIam O’Grady according to the court docket.”

AZERBAIJAN LOBBYING.  Story here.  “A new nonprofit supporting Azerbaijan is setting up shop in Washington to provide a counterbalance to the Armenian-American lobby.”

VERDICT IN ROBOCALL CASE.  Baltimore Sun.  “A Baltimore jury Tuesday found Paul Schurick, former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.’s campaign manager, guilty of fraud and related charges for his role in an Election Day 2010 robocall — a decision hailed by government watchdog groups who say that for too long dirty tricks have tainted Maryland politics.”

JACK JOHNSON SENTENCED.  Story here.  “Former Prince George’s county executive Jack B. Johnson pleaded for leniency Tuesday before a judge sentenced him to more than seven years in a federal prison for masterminding a corruption conspiracy that netted him as much as $1 million in bribes and implicated his wife and several developers, county officials and businessmen.”

BLAGO SENTENCING UPDATE.  Story here.  “The day before former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich is expected to be sentenced, his lawyers admitted on Tuesday for the first time that the disgraced politician is guilty of corruption, but pleaded before a federal judge for leniency on behalf of his family.”

ETHICS REFORM IN CHICAGO.  Story here.  “Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday plans to appoint a four-member panel to review what he calls an outdated and vague city ethics law.”


COUNTIES WON’T CUT LOBBYIST BUDGET.  Story here.  “Even as Manatee and Sarasota counties have cut hundreds of jobs and multimillions in spending over the past few years, one expense has been kept intact — the hundreds of thousands paid to Washington D.C. lobbyists each year.”

DC ETHICS REFORM.  The Post.  “The D.C. Council tentatively approved an ethics reform bill Tuesday that would make it easier for the government to punish corrupt elected officials, but members plan to refine the proposal amid disagreements over some of its provisions.”


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