5.13.19 political law links

RAPPER CHARGED. CBS. “One of the founding members of the 1990s hip-hop group the Fugees has been charged in a campaign finance conspiracy that took place during the 2012 presidential election, the Justice Department said Friday.”

PRIVACY AND CAMPAIGN FINANCE. RCP. “HR1 requires so much disclosure of funding sources that, critics say, far from rendering politicians accountable and transparent, it creates a privacy nightmare for ordinary citizens who give to nonprofit organizations.”

FEC IN THE NEWS. CPI. “The Federal Election Commission’s four leaders are offering lawmakers clashing perspectives on the agency’s very purpose.”

MISSING THE STORY. WM. “It is true that a lot of us don’t have the financial means to write out a check for $500—much less $2,800. But those amounts are not what anyone is referring to when we talk about the kind of influence big money has in politics. As a matter of fact, they are a drop in the bucket.”

MONEY BAN CAN WAIT. NPR. “Reform-minded Democrats have long held up ‘dark money’ — political money that can’t be traced to its source — as a symptom of what’s wrong with politics in Washington. But while House Democrats this winter passed a bill to end the secrecy shielding donors behind unregulated dark money contributions, liberal activist groups now deploy those funds to boost the party’s candidates in the 2020 elections.”

CA: NEW APPOINTEE. LAT. “Tapping a political ally, Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday appointed Richard Miadich as chairman of the state Fair Political Practices Commission, which enforces campaign finance and lobbying laws in California.”

MA: END TO LOOPHOLE. ML. “As of May 31, a union or nonprofit will no longer be able to donate up to $15,000 to a single candidate, party or PAC.”

NJ: VETO OR NO? NJS. “Campaign-finance reform advocates launched an 11th-hour effort Thursday to try to persuade Gov. Phil Murphy not to conditionally veto a bill that would require politically active nonprofits to reveal their funders and give New Jersey among the broadest disclosure requirements in the nation.”


5.1.19 political law links

PAC REJECTION. WE. “Joe Biden, the latest Democrat to get into the 2020 presidential primary, does not want help from the political action committees known as ‘super PACs’ in winning the election.”

CA: MORE POWER? DP. “We believe the rules should apply to everyone, including public sector actors who now play fast and loose with election law in political campaigns. By empowering the FPPC with a valuable new enforcement tool, AB1306 would send a clear message that California won’t tolerate public agencies or official spending taxpayer dollars on campaign activities.”

KY: TIES. IL. “A mysterious super PAC that spent hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of radio and television ads in March advocating the election of the Democratic candidate for governor Adam Edelen shed the first light on its own inner workings on Friday, when it filed its initial report to the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance and revealed its deep-pocketed funders and consultants.”

NV: NO BILL. RGJ. “Yet with just a month to go before the end of Nevada’s hectic, biennial lawmaking session, Democrats with a near supermajority in both chambers say they’re still working on promised patches for the state’s threadbare political corruption statute.”

NY: UNEXPECTED FOE. NYT. “The last-minute opposition helped derail a push to introduce a small-donor matching system to state candidates; lawmakers ultimately agreed to allow a nine-member commission to decide later on a framework for public financing.”

OR: REFORM LEAD. OR. “Oregon’s political leaders know they have a big money problem — there’s no limit on the amounts special interests can use to buy influence in Salem. The governor and some legislators are considering a critical fix: capping donations to state candidates. That reform would help reduce the sway corporations and other entities have over Oregon’s laws and people’s lives.”

TX: NEW OFFENSIVE. EN. “Empower Texans made its name by using its political action committee’s deep pockets to threaten Republicans with aggressive primary challenges if they fell out of line with the conservative group’s hardline agenda.”


4.25.19 political law links

GROUP SUES FEC. CNN. “A gun-safety group is suing the Federal Election Commission for failing to act on its complaints claiming a pattern of the National Rifle Association improperly coordinating its political spending with Donald Trump and other Republican candidates in recent elections.”

TODAY AT THE FEC. The agenda for today’s meeting is here.

FREE HELP CONSIDERED. SLA. “On Thursday, the FEC will again consider a request to allow a nonprofit to offer free and low-cost cybersecurity support to campaigns in the form of software, hardware, tech boot camps, and information-sharing systems.”

AL: QUESTIONS ON REPORTS. KPVI. “State officials have questions about a campaign finance report filed this month by former Alabama House Majority Leader Micky Hammon, who spent three months in federal prison last year for using campaign money on personal expenses.”

NY: WAIT FOR PUBLIC FINANCING. NCPR. “Public campaign financing could be coming to New York by the end of this year, now that Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature have created a commission to come up with a plan.”

NY: SCANDAL HISTORY. CS. “New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is no stranger to fundraising scandals, even if the allegations never fully stick. Just last week, The City reported on a previously undisclosed investigation by the city Department of Investigation into potential conflict of interest violations in relation to de Blasio’s fundraising.”

NC: REPORT CORRECTED. JN. “Campaign finance reports show multiple financial ties between North Carolina’s lieutenant governor and Greg Lindberg, a political donor recently indicted on conspiracy and bribery charges.”

WV: AIMING AT LOOPHOLE. WVG. “A campaign finance law passed during the legislative session closes a loophole that could have allowed PACs to skirt donor disclosure requirements, state elections officials say.”