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Bradley A. Smith’s Opening Remarks: AmericanForum: How we finance our political campaigns (Video)

Below is a transcript of Bradley A. Smith’s opening remarks: When I was at the Federal Election Commission I used to keep a file of letters that we received from ordinary citizens who were caught up in our investigations. These people weren’t trying to corrupt anything they were just trying to do what they thought [...]

Filed Under: Blog

Texas Tribune Festival: 2014 Tribune Festival: “Dark Money” vs. Donor Privacy

Moderated by Center for Public Integrity Senior Political Reporter Dave Levinthal. Featured were Sunlight Foundation Editorial Director Bill Allison, Texas State Representative Byron Cook, Baker Hostetler Associate Andrew Grossman, Center for Competitive Politics President David Keating, and Texas Ethics Commissioner Chase Untermeyer.

Filed Under: Blog, Broadcast, Video, Audio

Letter to FEC Commissioners on Rulemakings

Download full letter October 7, 2014 Lee E. Goodman, Chairman Ann M. Ravel, Vice Chair Caroline C. Hunter, Commissioner Matthew S. Petersen, Commissioner Steven T. Walther, Commissioner Ellen L. Weintraub, Commissioner Federal Election Commission 999 E Street, NW Washington, DC 20463 Dear Commissioners: We are writing this letter as individuals who, in various capacities but [...]

Filed Under: Blog, Featured Content

Is "campaign finance reform" about good governance?

From a recent announcement about an upcoming appearance by FEC Vice-Chair Ann Ravel, co-hosted by The League of Women Voters and RepresentUs.org, two groups that advocate more restrictions of political funding and speech: “Regardless of your issue — fear of our democracy becoming a “Dollarocracy,” or concern about corporate interference in addressing climate change and community clean [...]

Filed Under: Blog, Ann Ravel, campaign finance reform, climate change, community clean energy, Dollarocracy, FEC, fracking, gmo, gun control, League of Women Voters, RepresentUs.org

Money in Politics: What’s the Problem?

Is “campaign finance reform” a good way to regulate money in politics? Nationally syndicated, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and best-selling author George Will shows that, despite the innocent name given by its proponents, campaign finance reform is really a euphemism for controlling free speech. If the goal is to get money out of politics, the real [...]

Filed Under: Blog, Money in Politics

Tax-Financed Campaigns on the Wane in Maine

Maine’s tax-financed campaign program is struggling, according to an article by the Bangor Daily News’ Mario Moretto. He writes, “[t]he steady, precipitous decline in participation in Maine’s publicly funded election program continues this year, with only about half of all legislative candidates opting to forgo private campaign contributions.” Moretto explains that, “[i]n 2006 and 2008, [...]

Filed Under: Blog, Tax Financed Campaigns Press Release/In the News/Blog, Tax-Financing

New proposed “pay-to-play” rule draws criticism from free speech group

Alexandria, VA – The Center for Competitive Politics (CCP) today announced that it filed comments critical of a new Municipal Services Rulemaking Board proposal to expand so-called “pay-to-play” rules.  The draft amendments to what is formally known as Rule G-37 would in many cases ban certain investment managers from making campaign contributions to candidates for [...]

Filed Under: Blog, Press Releases

Top Texas Criminal Court Upholds Tom DeLay Acquittal

Alexandria, VA – This morning the top Texas criminal court upheld an Appeals Court decision to acquit former Congressman Tom DeLay of charges of “judgments convicting him of the offenses of money laundering of funds of $100,000 or more and conspiracy to commit money laundering of funds of $100,000 or more.” The Court concluded “We [...]

Filed Under: Blog, Press Releases

Campaign Legal Center’s Guide Proves Campaign Finance Law is Too Complicated

Justice Kennedy wrote in the Citizens United majority opinion: “The First Amendment does not permit laws that force speakers to retain a campaign finance attorney, conduct demographic marketing research, or seek declaratory rulings before discussing the most salient political issues of our day.” Unfortunately, our laws and regulations are so complex that even having a [...]

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Poll Shows Support for Clear Rules, Not for More Restrictions

On Tuesday, Public Citizen, an advocate for more campaign finance regulations, released the results of a poll aimed at capturing the opinions of likely voters about government regulation of political activity. The poll found that 86 percent of respondents believe it is “important to have clear rules in place concerning the political activity that non-profit [...]

Filed Under: Blog, IRS and the Tea Party