Issues

Bernie Sanders and Rick Hasen Are Two Sides of the Same Defective Coin on Free Speech

Recently, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders sat down with professor Rick Hasen of the University of California, Irvine School of Law. In their conversation, they discussed voter ID laws, gerrymandering, and campaign finance. The result was an illuminating look at how the diverging perspectives of a populist socialist and a legal expert arrive at common policy […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Money in Politics, Tax Financed Campaigns Federal, Tax Financed Campaigns Press Release/In the News/Blog, Tax-Financing, Bernie Sanders, Buckley v. Valeo, Rick Hasen

Recent Political Documentaries Have a Knee-Jerk Skepticism of Free Speech

I recently watched the new Netflix documentary Get Me Roger Stone, about the eponymous Republican political insider. The film traces Stone’s career from its beginnings with Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal, to his current ties with President Trump. Overall, it was a fascinating film about an eccentric and notorious political insider, but one thing […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Press Release/In the News/Blog, Issues, Alexandra Pelosi, Donors, Get Me Roger Stone, Meet the Donors, Roger Stone

How to Problematize Issue Advocacy

A recent Pacific Standard article offers a master class in how to spin run-of-the-mill issue advocacy into a spectacular conspiracy. “Awash in Dark Money, a Western Think Tank is Leading the Charge Against the Antiquities Act” is a must read, though not for the reasons the author intends. The subject – or target – of […]

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Issues, Media Watch, Money in Politics, Antiquities Act, Dark Money, Issue Advocacy, Jimmy Tobias, Pacific Standard, Private Giving, Sutherland Institute, Utah

Gorsuch’s Critics, Aided by an Enabling Media, Are Still Mischaracterizing Him

This week, the Supreme Court declined to hear a case challenging restrictions on political party fundraising and spending in the McCain-Feingold Act. This left in place a lower-court ruling upholding these restrictions. Following the Court’s announcement, multiple commentators have noted the implications of the decision on future challenges to McCain-Feingold and even the strength of […]

Filed Under: Blog, Issues, Media Watch, Money in Politics, Bloomberg BNA, Clarence Thomas, Gorsuch, McCain-Feingold, Neil Gorsuch, Political Parties, Republican Party of Louisiana v. FEC, Roll Call, Supreme Court, US News & World Report

New CCP Issue Brief: “Dark Money” Drops to 2.9% of Campaign Spending in 2016

Brief finds that nonprofits have never accounted for more than 5% of all election campaign spending Alexandria, VA – The Center for Competitive Politics, America’s largest nonprofit defending First Amendment political free speech rights, released a new Issue Brief today analyzing the amount of so-called “dark money,” or election campaign spending by nonprofits that are not required […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Money in Politics, Newsroom, Press Releases, Dark Money, Nonprofit Spending, Political Committee Spending

Roosevelt Institute Study on “Political Money” is Not the Revelation It Claims to Be

A new study on the impact of “money in politics” has been released by the Roosevelt Institute, and sympathetic outlets are already hailing it as a vindication of those who long argued that political spending directly influences policymaking in government. Despite its headline-grabbing claims, however, the study exaggerates the scale of political spending, overestimates its […]

Filed Under: Blog, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Federal, Contribution Limits Press Release/In the News/Blog, Issues, Money in Politics, bribery, corruption, Dodd-Frank, Jie Chen, Paul Jorgensen, Roosevelt Institute, Thomas Ferguson

Putting “Dark Money” In Context: Total Campaign Spending by Political Committees and Nonprofits per Election Cycle

PDF available here Not every group that spends money on campaigns or candidate-related speech is a political committee. If that were so, only politicians, parties, and PACs would have a voice in election campaigns. In addition to political committees, nonprofit groups are permitted to engage in a limited amount of campaign spending. These groups are […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Money in Politics, 501(c)(4)'s, 501(c)(5)s, 501(c)(6)s, Dark Money, Nonprofit Spending, Political Committee Spending

CLC Says CCP’s Wrong about “Dark Money.” Here are the Facts. Readers can Decide.

In a blog post from earlier today, the Campaign Legal Center’s Brendan Fischer critiques a mid-April CCP blog post I authored highlighting “Five Lessons about Spending in the 2016 Campaign You Might Have Missed.” In his post, Fischer labels CCP’s analysis that “‘dark money’ was nearly non-existent in 2016” as “wrong,” “misleading,” and “an alternative […]

Filed Under: Blog, Issues, Money in Politics, 2016 Election Cycle, Brendan Fischer, Campaign Legal Center, Center for Responsive Politics, Dark Money, Grey Money, LLCs, One Nation, OpenSecrets

Cato Holds Discussion on New Floyd Abrams Book on First Amendment

On Monday, the Cato Institute hosted a forum to discuss Floyd Abrams’s new book, The Soul of the First Amendment. Abrams is well known as a scholar and litigator of free speech issues. He is Senior Counsel at Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP and has been involved in numerous Supreme Court cases, including the famous […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, Cato Institute, First Amendment, Floyd Abrams, free speech, Ilya Shapiro, Roger Pilon, Ronald Collins, The Soul of the First Amendment

An Amendment to Restrict Political Speech Rights

At a recent town hall meeting in his district, Representative Ted Deutch (D-FL) renewed his perennial call to amend the Constitution to give incumbent politicians unprecedented power to regulate any money raised or spent “to influence elections.” Of course, money spent for the purpose of influencing elections is primarily money spent on speech. And presumably, […]

Filed Under: Amending Press Release/In the News/Blog, Amending the Constitution, Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Issues, First Amendment, independent speech, Ted Deutch, Tom Udall, U.S. Constitution, Udall Amendment, Florida, New Mexico