5.1.18 political law links

READINGS ON CORRUPTION.   NYT.  “As a corruption investigation into President Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, is underway, here are three books that delve into the history and consequences of political misconduct in the United States.”

PHILANTHROPY AND INFLUENCE.  HLS.  “In our own research, we have documented that—in an ironic twist—companies’ philanthropic efforts may serve at least in part to influence legislators, presumably to obtain laws and regulations that will serve shareholder interests, rather than the interest of the public.”

FEC ANNIVERSARY.   CPI.  “Vice Chairwoman Ellen Weintraub’s six-year term expired 11 years ago, when George W. Bush occupied the White House, the ‘Great Recession’ had yet to occur and the most momentous campaign finance decision of the century, Citizens United v. FEC, was still two-and-a-half years hence.”

DIAMOND AND SILK AND THE FEC.  WP.  “During that testimony, though, the two were asked if they had ever been paid by President Trump’s 2016 campaign, which they denied. In short order, it was determined that they had received money from the campaign, as listed in campaign filings submitted to the Federal Election Commission.”

CA: FPPC REFORM.  LAT.  “Hatch and Hayward, who were appointed by Secretary of State Alex Padilla and state Controller Betty Yee respectively, proposed the change based on their feeling that they have been left out of too many decisions — including on the agency’s budget — made by Remke.”  Watch the meeting here.

MD:  RAFFLE IN THE NEWS.   CG.  “One candidate is raffling off a shotgun, another has spent thousands in consulting fees while raising little money and another put together more than $80,000 contributions in about three months.”

NY:  GRAFT TRACKER.   NYT.  “What no one knew at the time was that this two-bit bootlegging run was the tip of a criminal scheme that within three years would be used as evidence in an unimaginably larger case, a federal corruption investigation that would ultimately reach deep into New York City’s highest offices of power.”

PA:  TIME FOR REFORM.   DT.  “Late last month, Gov. Tom Wolf, joined by his Democratic allies in the state House and Senate, rolled out a comprehensive suite of reforms aimed at restoring public trust in the electoral process and to limit the influence of special interests in state politics.”

TX:  TEC SUED.   EL.  “The THSC lawsuit says the Ethics Commission reinterpreted state law in the last year or so.  Under the new interpretation THSC is treated like a political action committee even though only 9 percent of its expenditures would be considered political in nature.”


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