Fri. political law links, 2-28-14

DISRUPTING THE COURT.  WP.  “A rare disturbance broke out Wednesday during oral arguments at the Supreme Court when a lone protester at the back of the ornate room rose and loudly urged the court to overturn its 2010 ruling in Citizens United, which opened the door to unlimited corporate campaign contributions in elections.”

WILL ON INDEPENDENT GROUPS.  WP.  “What are such ‘outside groups’ outside of? Not the political process — unless the process is the private preserve of the political parties. Liberal campaign finance scolds seem to think so. Applying their mantra that ‘money is not speech,’ they have written laws restricting contributions to parties, with the predicted effect of driving money into ‘outside groups.’ This is redundant evidence of why the Law of Unintended Consequences might better be called the Law of Unending Liberal Regrets.”

WHAT HAPPENED AT THE FEC YESTERDAY?  “Thus the Commission remains unable to muster four votes as to how to apply disclaimer requirements, last rewritten five years before the first release of the iPhone, to an ever-growing array of digital advertisements.”

CA:  GOVERNOR WARNED.  LAT.  “The state Fair Political Practices Commission sent warning letters to 37 politicians indicating the expenses covered at fundraisers by lobbyist Kevin Sloat violated the ban on contributions from lobbyists.”

CA:  KJ FINED.  “Mayor Kevin Johnson was fined, again, this month for legal violations involving his network of nonprofit organizations.”

CA:  LOBBYIST I.O.U.  “In his sixth year in the State Assembly, Fong still has a $100K bill he acquired during his 2008 campaign. If that seems like a lot, it is. But the creditor in this case—Richie Ross, one of Sacramento’s most notorious lobbyists—raises some serious questions about Fong’s ability to vote with his conscience.”

IL:  REDIRECTING FUNDS.  Pantagraph.  “Gov. Pat Quinn and state Sen. Mike Frerichs have redirected campaign donations to charities after determining they came from a Democratic county organization led by a state employee.”

MD:  OUSTED DELEGATE TO RUN AGAIN.  WJLA.  “Former Prince George’s County Del. Tiffany Alston, who was ousted over theft and misconduct convictions, has filed to run for her old seat.”

MA:  WHERE LOBBYIST CONTRIBUTIONS GO.  Boston Magazine.  “Lobbyists are limited to $200 contributions to each candidate, so it takes 50 friendly lobbyists to get you to that 10k line.”

MO:  PERSONAL USE CONCESSION.  KSDK.  “A former St. Louis alderwoman has sent out a letter of apology, admitting to using campaign money for personal use.”


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