Daily Media Links 9/22: Democratic senators preparing bill to deal with online political advertising, Facebook to overhaul political ads after threat of U.S. regulation, and more…

In the News The Hill: Congress should protect political speech by ignoring Disclose Act By Bradley Smith and Eric Wang This latest allegation of foreign interference with our elections inevitably will be used as fodder to support the newest iteration of the so-called “Disclose Act.” Over the summer, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) introduced a tweaked […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

The Hill: Congress should protect political speech by ignoring Disclose Act (In the News)

By Bradley Smith and Eric Wang
This latest allegation of foreign interference with our elections inevitably will be used as fodder to support the newest iteration of the so-called “Disclose Act.” Over the summer, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) introduced a tweaked version of this perennial bill to include features he claimed would “head off foreign election interference.” Upon closer inspection, the legislation turns out to be an exercise in distraction rather than disclosure. The bill’s foreign spending provisions are poorly disguised ploys for clamping down on public debate and dissent…
Aside from its foreign national provisions, the latest Disclose Act also contains numerous purported disclosure requirements (hence its name). But those disclosure provisions are also ploys to shut down political speech. For example, the bill would require any corporation (even one that has no foreign owners at all) making a “campaign-related disbursement” to disclose all of its “beneficial owners,” a term which likely includes any shareholder…
Whitehouse’s latest Disclose Act also would expand the existing “electioneering communications” law to regulate ads that merely mention a congressional candidate or a member of Congress up for reelection beginning on the first day of an election year through Election Day.

Filed Under: Brad Smith, Eric Wang, In the News, Published Articles

Federal Appeals Court Urged to Rule that Missouri Can’t Force Volunteers to Register as Lobbyists

Attorneys say First Amendment guarantees right to petition government Alexandria, VA – A volunteer who talks to state legislators asked a federal appeals court late yesterday to rule that the First Amendment bars the state of Missouri from forcing him to register and report like a professional lobbyist. Ron Calzone volunteers his time and pays […]

Filed Under: Blog, Calzone v MEC, Newsroom, Press Releases

2017 DISCLOSE Act Would Unconstitutionally Restrict Speech, CCP Analysis Finds

Alexandria, VA – The Center for Competitive Politics released an analysis today by Senior Fellow Eric Wang regarding the latest iteration of the DISCLOSE Act. Similar proposals have been introduced in Congress dating back to 2010 with the aim of creating a “deterrent effect” on political speech. The “DISCLOSE Act of 2017” (S. 1585) may […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Corporate Governance, Corporate Governance Comments, Corporate Governance Federal, Corporate Governance Press Release/In the News/Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure, Disclosure Federal, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, External Relations Comments and Testimony, Federal Comments and Testimony, Issues, Newsroom, Press Releases, DISCLOSE Act of 2017, Donor Privacy, Electioneering Communications, foreign nationals, Harassment, sheldon whitehouse

Analysis of the “DISCLOSE Act of 2017” (S. 1585): New Bill, Same Plan to Crack Down on Speech

PDF of Legislative Brief available here By Eric Wang, Senior Fellow[1] Introduction and Executive Summary Ever since the Supreme Court issued its Citizens United ruling in 2010,[2] opponents of the decision in Congress have been trying to counteract it with the “DISCLOSE Act” (“Democracy Is Strengthened by Casting Light on Spending in Elections Act”). Sen. […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Corporate Governance, Corporate Governance Comments, Corporate Governance Federal, Corporate Governance Press Release/In the News/Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure, Disclosure Federal, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, External Relations Comments and Testimony, Federal Comments and Testimony, Issues, DISCLOSE Act of 2017, Donor Privacy, Electioneering Communications, foreign nationals, Harassment, sheldon whitehouse

Daily Media Links 9/21: After Russian Facebook ads, Democrats seek new FEC rules on social media politics, Fate Is Uncertain for House GOP’s Campaign Finance Riders, and more…

CCP Cato Institute Holds First Amendment-Focused Constitution Day Symposium By Joe Albanese The first panel, titled “First Amendment Challenges,” was moderated by Ilya Shapiro, a Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies at Cato and the Editor-in-Chief of the Cato Supreme Court Review. That discussion featured Clay Calvert, Director of the Marion B. Brechner First Amendment Project […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

Cato Institute Holds First Amendment-Focused Constitution Day Symposium

On Monday, the Cato Institute held a day-long symposium entitled “The Supreme Court: Past and Prologue – A Look at the October 2016 and 2017 Terms.” The event coincided with the release of the newest issue of the Cato Supreme Court Review, which provides an annual look at the preceding term and future path of […]

Filed Under: Blog, Cato Institute, Constitution Day, International Refugee Assistance Project v. Trump, IRAP v. Trump, Matal v. Tam, Supreme Court, The Slants

Daily Media Links 9/20: Dressing Down Minnesota over its Dress Code for Voters, The rush – and risks – to regulating online political ads, and more…

Supreme Court American Thinker: Dressing Down Minnesota over its Dress Code for Voters By Wen Fa When you show up to vote in the North Star State, you are forbidden from wearing any apparel with a design, logo, or slogan with even the slightest hint of a political connotation, even if the slogan doesn’t have […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

Daily Media Links 9/19: Both parties to move on Facebook and other tech giants, A chilling study shows how hostile college students are toward free speech, and more…

In the News Law360: Texan FEC Pick Unlikely To Be Derailed By Tweet Drama By Michelle Casady Trainor has previously represented conservative group Empower Texans, which has fought the Texas Ethics Commission on the disclosure of political donors. But David Keating, president of the nonprofit group Center for Competitive Politics, an organization whose stated mission […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

Law360: Texan FEC Pick Unlikely To Be Derailed By Tweet Drama (In the News)

By Michelle Casady  
Trainor has previously represented conservative group Empower Texans, which has fought the Texas Ethics Commission on the disclosure of political donors.
But David Keating, president of the nonprofit group Center for Competitive Politics, an organization whose stated mission is to “promote and defend First Amendment rights” said there is a big difference between being a lawyer, paid to advocate for your client, and being a commissioner on the FEC. Naysayers may be conflating the two, he said.
Keating, who said he has met Trainor on a few occasions while in Austin testifying before the Texas Ethics Commission, said Trainer is “very knowledgeable” on election law.
“There are groups that don’t like him, so they’re trying to dig up what they can to make it controversial,” he said. “Trey clearly is someone who believes in free speech. I think he’s going to apply the law as it’s written and not come up with a hair-brained interpretation of what the law is.”
Keating said that although it is historically not common, senators have been able to block some “highly qualified” candidates for the post in the past, such as one put forward by Obama who had to withdraw his nomination, he said. He said he doesn’t think that will happen in Trainor’s case.

Filed Under: David Keating, In the News, Quotes CCP