CCP Accepting Applications for Development Assistant

The Center for Competitive Politics (CCP), is seeking a self-motivated, detail-oriented Development Assistant.  The position will involve substantial responsibility in assisting fundraising through soliciting institutional grants and individual donations.

Click the headline for more information on this position. 

Filed Under: Press Releases

Complicated, but not Comprehensive…Part II

Today the FEC will consider an alternative draft of AO 2006-30 (ActBlue).  CCP considers this most recent draft to be a substantial improvement over the original and has urged the Commission to adopt it.  I’ll be attending this open meeting and will report back this afternoon on the Commission’s decision. 

Update: The Commission has adopted the alternative draft AO 2006-30 by a 4-2 vote.

Click the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog

Comments on Alternative Draft AO 2006-30 (ActBlue)

CCP comments on Alternative Draft Advisory Opinion 2006-30 (ActBlue). Associate Director Paul Sherman recommends that the Commission adopt this alternative draft and explains some of the previous draft’s shortcomings.

Filed Under: Blog, External Relations Comments and Testimony, External Relations Sub-Pages, Federal, Federal Comments and Testimony, Uncategorized, campaign contributions, Contribution, Comments and Testimony

“Electric Politics”

CCP Chairman Brad Smith and John R. Lott, Jr. temper fears of electronic voting in National Review Online.  Say Smith and Lott:

The scary stories about electronic voting have one major problem: They are based on an inaccurate understanding of how the electronic systems work. First, none of the systems is hooked up to the Internet. The electronic voting machines are stand-alone units. Hacking them would be like trying to hack into your computer while it wasn’t hooked up to the Internet: impossible.

When computer scientists warn of possible tampering with voting machines, they are not talking about hacking but about someone physically breaking open the lock on each individual machine and reprogramming it. But even if those breaking into the machines could overcome the tamper-proof seals without being noticed, going through one computer at a time hardly seems like the way to steal most elections.

What about the nightmare scenario that a Republican manufacturer will secretly program the computers in advance to alter the election? Suppose such a tampering scheme were to occur: It would easily be revealed as the precinct election workers checked the machines for accuracy with sample votes both before and after the election.

Read the entire article here

Filed Under: Blog

The Fraud of “Publicly” Financed Elections

Would government financing of political campaigns really remove "deep-pocket special interests" from politics.  No.  Click the headline for more.

Filed Under: Blog

“What if We’re to Blame?”

In a recent Washington Post op-ed, Robert J. Samuelson considers whether public opinion is to blame for the problems in American democracy.  One observation stands out:

"[O]ur politicians are slaves to public opinion.  Superficially, this should be reassuring.  Democracy is working, because public attitudes remain the dominant influence–not "big money" or "special interest," as many believe.

"But it is not reassuring.  The trouble is that public opinion is often ignorant, confused and contradictory; and so the policies it produces are often ignorant, confused and contradictory–which means they’re ineffective."

Some may read this as an indictment of the public, but we read it as an indictment of campaign finance "reformers" and their quixotic efforts to "get money out of politics."  

Click the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog

Americans United’s “Reminder” to Churches Appears to be an Indirect Attempt at Evangelical Vote Suppression

PRESS RELEASE: November 2, 2006

Media Contact:

Bradley A. Smith: (614) 236-6317 

Filed Under: Press Releases

Complicated, but not Comprehensive

Thanks to advocates of campaign finance “reform”, the enterprise of political speech in America has become complicated business.  But while the regulatory regime advanced by reformers is incredibly complicated, it is not comprehensive; there are gaps.  Reformers call these “loopholes,” although we prefer to call the absence of regulation “freedom”.

As freedom becomes harder to find in the morass of campaign finance regulation, claims to have discovered some are met with a reflexive sort of skepticism.  Surely, it is thought, in a code this complicated there must be some applicable regulation.  In a recent draft Advisory Opinion, AO 2006-30 (ActBlue), the FEC’s Office of General Counsel appears to have fallen into this trap.  We at CCP would like to help pull them out.

Click the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog

Campaign Finance Disclosure – It’s good for what ails ya’

Worthless patent medicines used to be sold as all-purpose remedies.  Got a problem?  Not feeling well?  Try Dr. Smith’s Miracle Elixer. “It’s good for what ails ya’.”  Of course, Dr. Smith’s Elixer was probably little more than alcohol and syrup.  It didn’t really solve anything, but for a short time, at least, you got a pleasant whoozy feeling. 

In campaign finance, disclosure is the Miracle Elixer.  Everyone supports disclosure of campaign finance information.  But does it really solve every problem, or does it just give you a pleasant whoozy feeling?  Click on the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Pennsylvania

Comments on Draft AO 2006-30 (ActBlue)

CCP comments on Draft Advisory Opinion 2006-30 (ActBlue). Associate Director Paul Sherman recommends that prospective candidates not be treated as actual candidates for purposes of forwarding and depositing donations of federally eligible funds.

Filed Under: Blog, External Relations Comments and Testimony, External Relations Sub-Pages, Federal, Federal Comments and Testimony, Uncategorized, Comments and Testimony