By Allen Dickerson and Bradley SmithThis week, a unanimous federal appeals court struck a small but telling blow for privacy, free speech and accurate campaign disclosure. In Van Hollen v. Federal Election Commission, the lower court had ruled that organizations making electioneering communications — broadcast communications that merely mention a candidate’s name within 60 days before a general election — must disclose information on all of their donors, even those unconnected to the ads in question. The FEC’s regulation had previously required public disclosure only of donors who had paid for particular communications.
By Joe TrotterAccording to Open Secrets, employees from Oxbow contributed only $10,000 to Mitt Romney and a grand total of $50,750 to all federal candidates. In other words, the New York Times inflated the amount Oxbow employees gave to Mr. Romney (assuming that is what they meant to calculate) by 300,000%.Intentional or not, the New York Times published a first-page story attacking a Presidential candidate and an entire corporation, using faulty information to justify their narrative. The Times has done a grave disservice to their readership and seriously undermined its integrity as a serious news source.
By Tarini PartiThe super PAC for pro-choice women’s group Emily’s LIST pulled in nearly $2 million last month and plans to start spending on ads targeting independent women in eight key House and Senate races.
By TW FarnamHer campaign officials, however, say they are having trouble getting the public funding fast enough to pay the campaign debts. They have been quick to find a culprit and allege a minor conspiracy by Democrats on the Federal Election Commission, hinting that the commissioners are seeking to limit Stein’s ability to peel off liberals who would otherwise support Obama.
WASHINGTON — A D.C. councilmember who says more than $113,000 went missing from his campaign account this summer is pushing for public financing of political campaigns in the district.
Candidates and parties
By Alexander BoltonRepublicans say Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) flouted the spirit of ethical prohibitions against political activity on federal property Wednesday after he ripped Mitt Romney on the Senate floor.
By PETER BAKER and ERIC LIPTONThat’s when President Obama’s political team took over, providing a textbook example of how an incumbent can harness the power of the office to bolster the case for re-election. Rather than leave it to the trade office to announce the complaint, Mr. Obama decided to do it himself. Aides scheduled it for a campaign swing to the auto-dependent battleground state of Ohio, leaked it to the state’s largest newspaper, then sent other journalists a link to the resulting story plus voter-friendly talking points.
By Joel GerkePresident Obama’s campaign denied that he violated campaign finance laws by suggesting that donors contribute as much as $10 million to his official super PAC.
Has the House of Representatives lost its honor? Indeed: Members are now discouraged from using the term “Honorable” for any fundraising events.
By Christopher Burbach“If I was trying to extort money or something like that, why would I send an email directly from my email to his email?” Geary asked.
Lobbying and ethics
By ANNA PALMER and TONY ROMMGoogle has 21 outside firms on retainer and spent nearly $9 million on lobbying during the first half of 2012, according to Senate lobbying reports.