Good morning, here are today’s political law links, 4/26

OPINION ON SAME SEX CONTRIBUTION ISSUE. LAT. “Married same-sex couples cannot make joint contributions to federal candidates as opposite-sex couples are permitted to do, the Federal Election Commission said Thursday, a decision that gay rights advocates said reinforced their case for overturning the Defense of Marriage Act.”

EQUAL TIME AND COLBERT. Slate. “With the show’s nightly viewership of 1.5 million and the documented ‘Colbert bump’ in a politician’s support after an appearance, is Colbert violating election laws by blending his hosting role with his sister’s campaign?”

LOBBYING UPHEAVAL. The Times. “Lobbyists and their lawyers are capitalizing on arcane gaps in regulatory guidelines. For example, constricted definitions of lobbying contained in Congressional regulations have been construed to exempt from disclosure money spent on grass roots mobilization; on television, digital and social media campaigns; and on public relations efforts to build support among voters and key elites.”

UNUSED FUNDS. Story here. “Baucus has several options for what he can do with all that cash, according to Federal Election Commission regulations. The only real restriction is that he can’t keep it for himself.”

SEC RUMBLING. The Times. “S.E.C. officials have indicated that they could propose a new disclosure rule by the end of April, setting up a major battle with business groups that oppose the proposal and are preparing for a fierce counterattack if the agency’s staff moves ahead.”

IL: PLEA TO EMANUEL. Story here. “A group of self-styled reform aldermen said Thursday they want to help Mayor Rahm Emanuel live up to his campaign pledge to give the city’s top corruption buster unfettered access to city documents, though it’s unclear whether the push will gain traction.”

NJ: CFR UPDATE. Here. “A major campaign finance overhaul to be introduced today by state Senate Democrats would override the confusing patchwork of local pay-to-play laws that critics say allow many companies to make large donations to politicians who award them public contracts, The Star-Ledger has learned.”

SC: DEBATE DELAYED. Story here. “Leaders of the South Carolina House said Thursday that a re-written ethics package addresses critics’ concerns, but with a deadline looming, the chamber postponed a vote.”


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