Wed. political law links

RULES OF THE GAME.  Roll Call.  “Advocates of political money restrictions have long decried the FEC’s paralysis, but they are even more irate now that the agency has finally sprung into action.”

STEYER MONEY MOVES. Seattle Times. “In late September, political reporter Jim Brunner wrote about how California billionaire and climate activist Tom Steyer had decided to drop $1 million into Washington state’s elections to help Democrats regain control of the state Senate.”

I WATCHED SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO. WFB. “As Lachlan reported last week, the left-wing activist group is running a contest to see who can produce the best campaign ad highlighting ‘the importance of money in politics, and why we need to fundamentally reform the way elections are funded.'”

CONVICTION IN CASE.  Roll Call. “A Chicago man who bragged to Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe in 2008 about his close ties to then President-Elect Barack Obama was convicted Friday of violating federal law as he lobbied for relief of sanctions against the African nation.”

40 YEARS LATER.  NYT.  “Should what remains of this legislation be used as the foundation for additional reforms, or is the system so badly damaged that lawmakers should start from scratch?”

KOCH SUPER PAC.  Slate.  “[T]hey’ve now launched a super PAC called the Freedom Partners Action Fund that does back individual candidates, and as such the identities of the group’s donors are public.”

TO CHAIRITY.  “Democratic congressional candidate Michael Wager says he’ll donate money he got from Steris Corp.’s political action committee to charity because of its decision to move its corporate headquarters abroad for tax purposes.”

CA: CHEVRON IN RICHMOND. LAT. “So far this year, Chevron has poured an astounding $2.9 million into three campaign committees in Richmond. Of that, at least $1.4 million has gone to a committee supporting the pro-Chevron candidates and $500,000 to a committee opposing the candidate critical of Chevron, including the current mayor, Gayle McLaughlin. The figures suggest that Chevron is preparing to spend at least $33 for the vote of every resident of the city 18 or older.”

CT:  DEMOCRATS SLAMMED.  “In unusually blunt language, the State Elections Enforcement Commission is asking the Federal Election Commission to prevent the state Democratic Party from using funds from a federal campaign finance account to pay for a mailing supporting the re-election of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.”

LA:  DONATIONS QUESTIONS.  KTBS.  “Among those candidates who received questionable donations—Sam Jenkins. Jenkins received one donation that raised a red flag. $1000 from a church: the New Elizabeth Missionary Baptist Church.”

AU:  VICTORIAN’S SECRET.  “What Victorians need to know, from any party fielding candidates in the forthcoming election, is exactly who is donating to them, how much they have given and over what period of time and what, if any, are the donors’ affiliations with corporations/businesses and so on.  This information is not available because Victoria does not have a donations disclosure policy (although all parties must lodge with the Victorian Election Commission a copy of their Federal annual return, which refers to the $50,000 cap on any donations received from casinos and gambling licensees).”


Tues. political law links

GROUPS APPEAL.  P&I.  “After being rebuffed Oct. 1 in U.S. District Court on procedural grounds, Republican state committees in New York and Tennessee asked a federal appeals court in Washington Oct. 6 to expedite the case and to overturn the Securities and Exchange Commission’s pay-to-play rule, arguing it is both unconstitutional and that it gives an unfair advantage to federal candidates, who do not have the same constraints.”

M-16. WP. “Because of the vacuum of power within his party and the lack of a clear 2016 front-runner, confidants said Romney is grappling with this question: If drafted, would he answer the party’s call?”

WARNER DENIES.  WP.  “Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.) said Monday that while he ‘brainstormed’ with a son of former state senator Phillip P. Puckett about ‘possibilities that his sister might want to pursue,’ he did not and would not offer a job to the daughter of a state lawmaker.”

HUNT ON POLITICAL FUNDS.  NYT.  “Dark spending provides the influence and access that comes with big money without the accountability or the attention from critics.”

IS “DARK MONEY” SCARY?  Althouse.  “Does the term ‘dark money’ sound scary because it — intentionally? — resonates with racism?”

MONEY IN 14.  NYT.  “The proportion of advertising flowing through nondisclosing groups is slightly lower than in 2012, a presidential election year with far more spending over all.”

12 DONORS.  NYT.  “Twelve years later, a series of workarounds and court rulings have allowed more cash than ever to flood the political system.”

INDEPENDENT MONEY IMPASSE.  ADN.  “Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is challenging his Republican opponent, Dan Sullivan, to sign a new pledge that would likely reduce the amount of outside spending in their race by penalizing the candidates if they get support from groups whose donors don’t meet certain transparency standards.”

TEXAN GIVES.  Courier-Journal.  “Kentuckians for Strong Leadership, the potent super PAC that has bought millions of dollars in ads supporting the re-election of Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, raised $3 million during the quarter ending Sept. 30. And almost none of that money was contributed by Kentuckians.”

ID: CAMPAIGN SPENDING.  “In three statewide races, Democratic candidates enjoy a significant fundraising advantages heading into the final weeks of the campaign.

PA:  FEE RAISE.  “A state panel will consider hiking the lobbyist registration fee from $200 to $300.”


political law links

FEC VOTES. The Hill. “Commissioners voting in the majority cheered the step as a bipartisan breakthrough on the chronically gridlocked panel, which is made up of three Democrats and three Republican members.”

ACTBLUE POWER. NYT. “ActBlue has led the movement toward small online political donations.”

NEW SUPER PAC UP. Bloomberg. “As Republicans rush to save Senator Pat Roberts in Kansas, a new super-political action committee is aiding independent challenger Greg Orman.”

HI: REPORT QUESTIONS. West Hawaii Today. “A Honolulu political action committee that ran negative ads slamming incumbent Kohala County Councilwoman Margaret Wille is being looked into by the state Campaign Spending Commission, following complaints from a political activist.”

NH: UNION ISSUE. Concord Monitor. “Local Union 131 Volunteer PAC failed to follow state campaign finance requirements when it donated $25,000 to Gov. Maggie Hassan’s 2012 campaign, the attorney general’s office ruled in response to a complaint filed in August by the New Hampshire Republican State Committee.”

NJ: CHRISTIE AIDE TO FIRM. “A longtime member of Gov. Chris Christie’s senior staff who stepped down late last week is teaming up with a New Jersey lobbying group, officials announced.”

TX: ANONYMOUS GIVING. “Wendy Davis’ gubernatorial campaign during the last three months racked up close to another $1 million in contributions from small donors whose identities it has voluntarily opted to keep out of public view, bringing her total from anonymous contributors to roughly $4.25 million for the entire cycle.”

HAVE A GOOD WEEKEND. I’ll send around the next set of links on Tuesday.