Good morning, here are today’s political law links (1/7/13)

CAMPAIGN FINED. Roll Call. “The Federal Election Commission has imposed a $375,000 fine on President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign for reporting violations, Politico is reporting, citing as-yet-unpublished FEC documents.”

POKER-PLAYING LOBBYIST. Mickey Leibner’s confessions of a young lobbyist appears in Roll Call. “The most useful strategies I develop often comes out of these kinds of off-campus interactions with staffer friends. When we start nerding out over possible bill co-sponsors at our monthly poker game, for instance, we know we don’t have to filter our ideas — which means we can be more open, bold and innovative. These ideas aren’t always perfect, but the number of times a key strategy or piece of intel has come out of casual discussions during poker or Sunday football would probably surprise you.”

DISCLOSE 13. Roll Call. “The Democrat-authored campaign finance transparency bill known as the DISCLOSE Act failed to win approval in either the 111th or the 112th Congresses, but its backers have set out to try again in this session.”

INAUGURAL DONORS. Bloomberg. “The list released by the presidential inaugural committee doesn’t provide the size of the contributions. Four years ago, the committee identified its contributors by employer, city, and amount.” PIC’s list is here.

INAUGURAL ALERT. Covington: “While less regulated than pre-election political activities, presidential inaugurations are nonetheless subject to a number of easily-overlooked rules.”

POST-ELECTION RULES WEBINAR. Public Affairs Council. “The elections may be over, but that doesn’t mean your compliance concerns are.”

COMMISSIONER STEPPING DOWN. Former Commissioner Robert Lenhard and Covington’s Kevin Glandon note Commissioner Bauerly’s recent departure announcement here.

YESTERDAY’S WJ. Yesterday’s C-SPAN Washington Journal featured Sunlight’s Daniel Schuman discussing congressional pay and related topics.

PELOSI AND CFR. Dem. Leader Nancy Pelosi mentioned campaign finance both in her address to the opening session and in a press conference the next day: “Yesterday on the floor, I presented several issues that I think we can work together on, extend a hand of friendship to the Republicans to say, let’s work together for job creation, for good paying jobs here in America, build our infrastructure, address our energy challenges… We talked about clean campaigns, building confidence in the electoral process, all of this, building confidence that we can create jobs, building confidence that we can keep our people safe, building confidence that our campaigns are clean and that we remove obstacles to participation, increase civility, reduce the role of money.”

STATES AND NONPROFITS. Eliza Newlin Carney’s latest is online here. “Tax-exempt groups that spent hundreds of millions on the 2012 elections without disclosing their donors have stirred no response from federal regulators but have drawn the ire of state officials who are moving aggressively to restrict them.”

CA: STRONGER FPPC SOUGHT. Story here. “Ronald Rotunda, a Fair Political Practices Commission member, said he does not defend the Arizona group’s donation but that Ravel’s handling of the case amounted to ‘self-aggrandizement.'”

CT: ARREST. Story here. “Disgraced former state Sen. Ernest E. Newton II found himself back in trouble with the law Friday after he was busted on campaign finance fraud charges stemming from his failed bid to regain his old seat in Hartford.”

GA: ETHICS REFORM? Story here. “McKoon has been advocating a $100 limit on what lobbyists can spend on lawmakers. McKoon also wants a consistent stream of revenue tied to the state budget to fund an ethics commission with enforcement power.”

ID: ETHICS COMMITTEE? Story here. “Ethics was one of the big issues at the Idaho Statehouse last year, but some lawmakers say not nearly enough was done about it.”

MD: GUILTY PLEA. Story here. “Catonsville developer Steve W. Whalen Jr. pleaded guilty Thursday in Baltimore County Circuit Court to five counts of election-law violations for illegally funneling money to a county councilman’s campaign and exceeding political contribution limits.”


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