Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission

Resigning FEC Commissioner Ravel Never Stopped Her Partisan Grandstanding

FEC Commissioner Ann Ravel announced over Presidents’ Day Weekend that she would resign from her post with only a few months left in her term. In an accompanying New York Times op-ed, she cited the “gridlock” on the Commission as a major reason for resigning and took some parting shots at her colleagues. The first […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Issues, Money in Politics, Ann Ravel, FEC, federal election commission

The Silliness of Jon Tester

Senator Jon Tester (D. Mont.) has introduced another constitutional amendment to strip rights from corporate entities. His amendment (S .J. Res. 20) would provide that “(1) The rights enumerated in this Constitution and other rights retained by the people shall be the rights of natural persons; (2) As used in this Constitution, the terms ‘people’, […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Citizens United v. FEC, Constitutional Amendment, Corporate Personhood, Elizabeth Warren, Jon Tester, SJR 20, We The People Amendment

Significant Constitutional and Practical Issues with Washington Senate Bill 5219

The Honorable Mark Miloscia The Honorable Hans Zeiger The Honorable Sam Hunt Re:  Significant Constitutional and Practical Issues with Senate Bill 5219 Dear Chair Miloscia, Vice Chair Zeiger, Ranking Minority Member Hunt, and members of the Senate State Government Committee: On behalf of the Center for Competitive Politics, I am writing you today to respectfully […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Disclosure, Disclosure Comments, Disclosure State, External Relations Comments and Testimony, State, State Comments and Testimony, Buckley v. Valeo, Harassment, Human Life of Washington v. Brumsickle, Junk Disclosure, Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life v. Swanson, NAACP v. Alabama, New Mexico Youth Organized v. Herrera, Washington

Issue One Launches Plan to “Return Government to the American People” By Empowering Government

On Wednesday morning, the self-styled campaign finance “reform” group Issue One hosted an event at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The event, entitled “Returning Government to the People,” was billed as the launch of a new policy initiative to further regulate our campaign finance system. Several members of the press were in attendance […]

Filed Under: Amending Press Release/In the News/Blog, Amending the Constitution, Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Press Release/In the News/Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, External Relations Sub-Pages, Issues, Money in Politics, Connie Morella, Dan Glickman, Issue One, Ray LaHood, Tim Roemer, Zach Wamp

Massachusetts Businesses and Labor Unions Are Entitled to the Same Free Speech Rights

The ability of businesses and unions to participate in electoral politics has long been a contentious topic, particularly in the years since Citizens United v. FEC. That decision struck down a federal ban on independent expenditures from those entities, but not a ban on direct donations from businesses and unions to candidates and parties (those […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Press Release/In the News/Blog, Contribution Limits State, Issues, Buckley v. Valeo, Goldwater Institute, Kentucky, Massachusetts

Self-Styled Campaign Finance “Reformers” Jump the Shark

Self-Styled Campaign Finance “Reformers” Jump the Shark Ten Stunts, Antics, and Exploits That Show Many Anti-Free Speech Activists Have Lost It By Luke Wachob Introduction What do activists do when the government isn’t prioritizing their cause? What does the head of a federal agency do when she doesn’t get her way? What do “good government” […]

Filed Under: Amending Press Release/In the News/Blog, Amending the Constitution, Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Enforcement, Faulty Assumptions, FEC, First Amendment, Issues, Money in Politics, Research, Super PACs, Super PACs, "John Doe", Ann Ravel, Democracy Spring, Doug Hughes, ellen weintraub, federal election commission, Gyrocopter, Larry Lessig, Mayday PAC, Udall Amendment, Zephyr Teachout, Enforcement, Faulty Assumptions, First Amendment, Enforcement, Faulty Assumptions, First Amendment, Super PACs, Wisconsin

Should Candidates Have Control Over Who Can Speak About Elections?

Unsuccessful candidates often blame their loss on an opponent’s spending. Sometimes those complaints are lodged at better-funded candidates, sometimes at the media, and other times at independent groups. So it is with Zephyr Teachout, whose main takeaway from the 2016 election, apparently, is that people talked about it too much. After losing to Republican John […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Money in Politics, Super PACs, John Faso, Zephyr Teachout, New York

Super PAC Funding Comes Overwhelmingly from Individuals, Again

Data from the 2016 election continues to undermine a key prediction made by critics of Citizens United in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s famous 2010 ruling. Once again, super PACs are being funded overwhelmingly by citizens, not corporations. As reported by The Wall Street Journal, “A study by the Conference Board’s Committee for Economic […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Money in Politics, Super PACs, Alan Grayson, Buckley v. Valeo, Committee for Economic Development, President Obama, SpeechNow.org v. FEC, The Conference Board, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal

The Hidden Admissions of the “Unilateral Disarmament” Defense

Vague commitments to pursue “campaign finance reform” and promises to overturn Citizens United have become increasingly popular talking points among some candidates this election cycle. Following this trend, misguided and unfounded claims that the system is dysfunctional and that electoral and policy outcomes are the result of nothing more than monetary transactions among politicians, wealthy […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Money in Politics, Super PACs, Unilateral Disarmament

Limiting Access to Lawmakers Would Stifle Representative Democracy

Media commentary about the fine line between political influence and corruption has been plentiful over the past week. Many different writers have expressed discomfort at the notion of donors to a private charity being granted meetings with senior State Department officials. Absent evidence of direct quid pro quo corruption, these writers have argued that providing […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Access, Buckley v. Valeo, Chief Justice John Roberts, corruption, Influence, Justice Anthony Kennedy, McDonnell v. United States