Quotes Allen: In practice, what this will do is require any corporation that wants to use its constitutional rights to submit to a highly politicized, highly partisan debate every year on how they go about doing it.
On Monday (Feb. 27) the Supreme Court refused to hear National Organization for Marriage v. McKee. In that case, the National Organization for Marriage (“NOM”) had unsuccessfully challenged a Maine law that required it to register with state and disclose detailed information about its members and its finances before it could speak out about politics in the Pine Tree State. In ruling against NOM, both federal district judge Brock Hornsby and then the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit had concluded that the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Citizens United v. FEC had implicitly overturned two prior Supreme Court decisions, Talley v. California and McIntyre v. Ohio Elections Commission, which had upheld a right to engage in political speech without having to register and disclose oneself to state authorities. (Note that this issue was not raised in the cert petition in McKee).
John Liu’s campaign is in legal trouble again. The New York City comptroller has again found himself the subject of scrutiny since his campaign treasurer has been charged with funneling illegal contributions to his campaign, allegedly in order to circumvent the $4,950 limit on individual contributions.
Chalk up another win for the law of unintended consequences. When federal courts ruled in 2010 against restricting donations to political action committees, Republican strategists rejoiced. Here, they thought, was a way for the GOP’s deep-pocketed donors to gain an advantage over President Obama’s fundraising machine.
Is it strictly limited to quid pro quo bribery or is it more broadly based, as in decay or undermining of an assumed ideal, such as the abuse of power or subversion of the democratic political system by use of political power for selfish personal gain for oneself or others?
Candidates and parties
Rick Santorum’s campaign has spent much of today defending its automated phone calls urging Democrats to cross party lines and support the Pennsylvanian in today’s Michigan primary.
The book-selling, professional marketing and all-purpose political organization known as “Newt 2012” is being pestered by the Federal Election Commission.
Lobbying and ethics
Democratic lobbyists who have been barred from fundraising for President Obama’s campaign are showing little interest in donating instead to a super-PAC that supports him.
Fraud charges against his campaign finance chief have New York City Comptroller John C. Liu considering “how to move forward” in his bid for mayor.
Embattled city Comptroller John Liu’s campaign treasurer was busted today on charges she helped funnel illegal political donations into the Queens Democrat’s war chest.