Curtailing freedom of speech isn’t free, Utah finds out find$ out

UT:  ATTORNEY’S FEES AWARD.  CCP.  “The state of Utah today told a federal court it would pay $125,000 in attorney’s fees in a constitutional challenge to its campaign finance laws. If the court approves the fees, as expected, it would mark the final step in a lawsuit filed on behalf of three Utah groups by attorneys at the Center for Competitive Politics (CCP). Federal civil rights laws provide for fee awards when states violate constitutional rights.”

APPARENT ERROR.  “Earlier this afternoon, the House Clerk’s Office sent out emails to a number of registered federal lobbyists and lobbyist organizations alerting them to a missing 2016 Mid-Year LD-203 contribution report (due on August 1, 2016).  It appears that this email was sent in error to a batch of registrants who properly filed their reports on time.  We have confirmed with the House Clerk’s office that they are aware of this error.”

DOWN BALLOT FEAR.  WP.  “Some of the country’s wealthiest Republican donors are targeting Senate and House races around the country, hoping a financial firewall will protect the party’s congressional majorities on Nov. 8.”

MORE REVIEW ON WILLIAMS.  Politico.  “The House Ethics Committee on Thursday released new details about allegations that Rep. Roger Williams used his position to privately benefit himself and a car dealership he owns in Weatherford, Texas.”

SUPER PAC FOR JOHNSON/WELD.  ML.  “[Kevin] Martin is the national co-chairman and co-founder of a new super PAC for Republicans supporting Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson and vice presidential nominee William Weld.”

HARD MONEY HIT.  WT.  “There are at least 6.1 million Americans working at U.S. companies with foreign ownership, from TransCanada to BMW. [Commissioner Ann Ravel’s] plan would bar those companies from helping American workers set up special funds like political action committees.”

CA:  LOBBYIST REGISTRATION.  SMDP.  “Individuals paid to influence decisions at City Hall will be required to publicly disclose their activities as of Sept. 19.”

NM:  COMPLAINT COMPLAINTS.  NMPR.  “In response to allegations of breaking campaign finance laws, Republican Secretary of State candidate Nora Espinoza said her accuser manipulated documents to create false accusations.”

NM:  QUESTIONING THE SYSTEM.  WT.  “One of the candidates running for secretary of state is raising more questions about the accuracy and transparency of New Mexico’s electronic campaign finance reporting system, saying the online searchable database is incomplete.”

NY:  BOAT TRIP.  GG.  “The use of campaign funds to pay for government staff to take a working field trip appears to be completely legal under New York State campaign finance law, but critics of the system say the law is too loose, including around blurred lines like the cabinet retreat.”


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