Political law links for April 24, 2017

BID DEBT.  IS.  “Conservative presidential candidate Evan McMullin, who earned more than 20 percent of the vote in Utah, is staring at a $670,000 debt from his campaign that could hurt plans to run for another office, according to a report.”

FAMILY PAY.   FB.  “Rep. Maxine Waters (D., Calif.) is slated to pay her daughter another $108,000 for running a lucrative campaign operation that pulls in hundreds of thousands of dollars each election cycle, FEC filings show.”

TECH LOBBY.  RC.  “Tech giants like Facebook, Google and Microsoft focused some of their lobbying dollars in Washington over the past three months on combating President Donald Trump, as he eyed major changes to the U.S. tax code and imposed new restrictions on foreign immigrants.”

CA:  ETHICS ACTION.   PE.  “On Tuesday, April 18, the panel determined Councilman Jim Perry did not violate the code or the state’s open meetings law with his actions connected to the 2014 investigations of two council colleagues.”

FL:  ETHICS PUSH.  PBP.  “Florida’s ethics arbiters claimed their “independence” Friday in response to a legislative directive that put more restrictions on their operations, including out-of-state travel spending and hiring and firing of staff.”

IL:  PLEA IN CASE.   IP.  “A State Board of Elections hearing examiner hopes to issue a report May 15 about whether Illinois Auditor General Frank Mautino violated an order to amend campaign expense reports detailing tens of thousands of dollars in payments to a bank and service station in his then legislative district.”

MI:  POSSIBLE INVESTIGATION.   NH.  “It might turn out to be much ado about nothing, but a complaint has been filed against Taylor Mayor Rick Sollars and his campaign for a possible violation of the Michigan Campaign Finance Act.”

MO:  LOBBYIST LANDLORDS.  SLPD.  “According to a Post-Dispatch review, four members of the Legislature and one former deputy attorney general have rented sleeping space from lobbyists this year, compared with eight last year.”

VA:  CASH CLASH.  WP.  “One candidate takes money from an international activist group that doesn’t disclose the names of the overwhelming majority of its donors. The other takes money from Virginia’s biggest utility, which is also the top lobbyist in the state.”

VA:  REPORTING QUIRK.   IN.  “It did seem a little odd – a $40,000-plus in-kind donation from Peter Fallon to his own campaign for Arlington County Board – but turns out, there’s a simple explanation.”


Thursday’s political law links

TODAY AT THE FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION.  The agenda for today’s meeting is here.

MCCASKILL VIEW.  NL.  “Sen. Claire McCaskill isn’t backing off from her opposition to dark money in politics, even after a nonprofit that isn’t required to disclose its donors spent $500,000 to support her.”

GUILTY PLEA FOR CONTRIBUTIONS.  DOJ.  “A New York City man pleaded guilty today to making illegal political contributions in the names of others to campaign committees for U.S. President and U.S. Senate in 2011, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Blanco of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.”

CA:  GROUP FINED.   VOC.  “The group Fullerton Taxpayers for Reform will be fined $2,500 by the state’s ethics watchdog for distributing 500 improperly labeled campaign signs during the June 2016 primary election against State Senate candidate Sukhee Kang.”

DC:  SLOPPY FINANCE.  WP.  “It is inexcusable that the audit of the 2015 campaign took so long and that voters who were asked to vote on Mr. Todd’s reelection last year were kept in the dark.”

FL:   CITY BOARD POWER.  Tall.  “he city’s independent ethics board doesn’t have the authority to investigate ‘misuse of position’ of its officials and employees, and has even less teeth than the state Commission on Ethics, an attorney for the board told members this week.”

IL:  REVIEW EXPANDED.   CT.  “The Chicago Board of Ethics on Wednesday found there is probable cause that eight more individuals and the companies they represented broke the city’s lobbying laws for actions revealed in Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s personal emails — a substantial expansion of the number of potential lobbying violations now under review.”

NY:  OPTING OUT.   GG.  “This year, with few competitive races in the 2017 city election cycle, a number of sitting City Council members seem to be eschewing the program, with some having spent significant sums in the past three years and others having already raised more than they could legally spend if they participated.”

TX:  FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE APPROVED.   TT.  “Inching toward 21st century transparency, the Texas House on Tuesday preliminarily approved — in a unanimous vote — to require that the personal financial statements of state politicians and bureaucrats be posted online.”

VT:  DELAY ON ETHICS.  WAMC.  “Vermont lawmakers have again pushed back a vote on a measure to create a statewide ethics commission.”


Your daily Political Law Links for Apr. 19, 2017

THE LATEST IN PAY TO PLAY.  Lex.  “Regulators and lawmakers across the United States have put forward new pay-to-play rules to further limit campaign contributions by companies and individuals that do business with or lobby the government.”

INAUGURAL HAUL.  Hill.  “President Trump’s inaugural committee raised a record-breaking $106.7 million to pay for his inauguration festivities, it announced Tuesday. ”

CA:  RESTRICTIONS REPEALED.  PT.  “A split City Council on Tuesday repealed a local campaign finance law that barred elected officials from contributing officeholder funds to other candidates running for local, state or federal elective office.”

FL:  ETHICS CHANGES UPDATE.   PBP.  “A major ethics package backed by House Speaker Richard Corcoran is dead for the session after the Senate refused to consider the legislation, House leaders said Tuesday.”

MO:  LITTLE ATTENTION.   KMBZ.  “A senate bill has been filed to require financial disclosure from non-profits that support political candidates. The bill has not been scheduled for a hearing.”

MT:  BILL REJECTED.  USN.  “A bill to raise campaign contribution limits for state candidates and allow decisions on campaign finance violations to go to mediation has failed on a tie vote in the Montana House.”

PA:  MESSY RULES.   PPG.  “This is the first election cycle in which candidates seeking elected office in Pittsburgh must abide by a 2015 campaign-finance ordinance, and at least one mayoral candidate appears to be stumbling over a requirement limiting how much a supporter can provide.”

PA:  PROBATION IN CASE.  Phil.  “For years, John H. Estey – former top aide to Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell – surreptitiously recorded Pennsylvania power brokers and cooperated with FBI agents running an elaborate sting probing a pay-to-play culture in the capital.”