Daily Media Links 10/26: Queens Politician Charged With Campaign Fraud, Campaign finance watchdog may sue Arizona group, and more…

In the News

Wall Street Journal: The Dangers of an Informed Electorate 
By Bradley A. Smith
But the left seems to think it is somehow illegitimate for management to speak to its own employees about how different candidates, and the policies they espouse, could affect the company. The left has two main fears: First, that corporations will say things it doesn’t like; and second, that employees will listen.  

CCP

The Failure of “Citizen’s Elections” 
By Sarah Lee
While New York City – the reported model for what Soros et al has in mind — is no stranger to campaign finance corruption, the state of Connecticut may be living closer to the outcome of what these systems actually lead to. Using a report released by The Center for Competitive Politics (CCP) entitled “Meet the New Legislature, Same as the Old Legislature: A Quantitative Analysis of Connecticut’s Citizens Elections Program”, the case can be made that New York, like Connecticut, may find that public financing programs actually lead to, contrary to Soros’ stated goal, incumbency protection and do little to curb a problem that, at least in the case of Connecticut, may not even exist at all.  

Issue Review: Meet the New Legislature, Same as the Old Legislature
A quantitative analysis of the Connecticut Citizens’ Elections Program

Independent groups

New York Times: The First Amendment Is Just Fine As Is  
By Floyd Abrams
Well-established principles like these are what led the court in Citizens United to strike down legislation that made it a crime for any corporate or union money to be spent within 60 days of an election on material that appears on television, cable or satellite that endorses or denounces a candidate for federal office. It was not new for the court to apply the First Amendment to speech of corporations; Justice Kennedy cited 25 prior cases (including ones involving the corporate owner of The New York Times) involving just such First Amendment protection. The opinion, as well, made clear that Congress was fully empowered to require disclosure of who made what expenditures and in what amount.  

Roll Call: Former IRS Official Accuses ALEC of Lying About Assets  
By Janie Lorber
The former head of the IRS’ Exempt Organizations division accused the conservative nonprofit American Legislative Exchange Council of lying about its assets in its federal tax filings in a letter sent to the agency Wednesday. 

NY Times: Outside Spending Pours Into House Races 
By DEREK WILLIS
Late spending on Congressional races from outside groups is nothing new, but the combination of redistricting and the proliferation of “super PACs” has helped to drive a recent explosion of money into competitive House districts around the nation.  

Bloomberg: Ohio Senate Race a Magnet for TV Ads From Unknown Groups 
By Alison Fitzgerald
Voters in Ohio listening to the radio last week likely heard an ad accusing Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown of joining President Barack Obama in waging a “war on coal.” 

SCOTUS/Judiciary

Reuters: Appeals court allows Illinois campaign finance caps 
By James Kelleher
(Reuters) – A federal appeals court ruled on Wednesday that an Illinois law limiting contributions to political campaigns can remain in force at least until the November 6 election.  

Washington Post: Montana GOP governor hopeful in limbo after court freezes his cash 
By Aaron Blake
Hill accepted the funds the day after a federal judge lifted the limit on the amount of money candidates can accept from their state party — the existing limit was $22,600 — but by Oct. 9, a federal appeals court re-instated the limit. (This week, the U.S. Supreme Court opted not to hear an appeal of that decision, meaning the limit remains in place through Election Day.) 

Disclosure


LA Times: Campaign finance watchdog may sue Arizona group 
By Chris Megerian
The legal action could become a test of a new state regulation requiring nonprofits to disclose the identity of their donors if they know the money is going to be used in a California campaign.  

Boise State Public Radio: Why Idaho May Win And Lose Fight To Uncover Donors To Education Proposition Campaign  
By Adam Cotterell
Idaho’s Secretary of State wants a court to order a group campaigning for Idaho’s ballot referenda to reveal its donors.  

Tax financing


Wall Street Journal: Queens Politician Charged With Campaign Fraud 
By Sean Gardiner
Mr. Baldeo reported that he received a total of $47,803 in campaign donations and sought matching funds on about $15,000 which, under the city’s complicated calculation system, would have resulted in him receiving about $90,000 in matching public funds. However, the Campaign Finance Board ruled that Mr. Baldeo was ineligible for those matching funds “due to serious, unresolved questions about the validity of various contributions to the campaign,” the complaint states.