Clips Round-up for 3/5/12
Campaign Finance/Fair Elections
Politico: FEC's bad rap getting worse
"Meet the Federal Election Commission, the agency tasked with enforcing campaign finance law. This six-person panel has long been slow-moving and frequently divided, but this year its members have taken their reputation to new heights just as money emerges as the biggest legal issue of the season."
NYT: We know how to spell relief
NYT editorial: "TV stations’ responsibility to the public is also at the heart of a proposal being considered by the Federal Communications Commission. It would require stations to post on a central Web site which groups are buying how many ads for how much money. This is no substitute for the full disclosure mandate that Congress is denying voters, but it would be a welcome start."
KEYC: Walz pushes DISCLOSE act
"Campaign finance reform has been an issue for Congressman Tim Walz for quite some time, and he's getting on board with the DISCLOSE Act, an effort to force Super PAC donors to report their donations, and for the names of top donors to appear in Super PAC political ads."
National Journal: Disparate impact
Cover story on this week's National Journal: "A disproportionate share of ethics cases have been brought against members of the Congressional Black Caucus. African-American lawmakers would like to know why."
Public Campaign: New ad: Scott Tipton's big oil ties
Public Campaign launched a new tv ad campaign in Colorado on Friday, highlighting Rep. Scott Tipton's (R-Colo.) big oil money, asking whether he'll vote to keep giving the industry their wasteful subsidies. News roundup here.
NYT: Top Obama adviser to appear at "super PAC" meeting
"David Plouffe, a top political adviser to President Obama, is scheduled to appear at a West Coast fund-raising meeting Friday for the “super PAC” backing President Obama’s re-election bid, according to several people familiar with the event."
McClatchy: Romney's quest for the presidency has cost $200 million over the years
"Since first setting eyes on the White House, Mitt Romney and his backers have spent over $200 million - including $44.6 million of his fortune - on a seven-year quest for the Republican presidential nomination." ...and he has still had trouble putting away a Senator that lost his last election by 18 points.
LA Times: Secret donors to c4s play behind-the-scenes politics
Column on secretive c4 donations: "The consequence is that business interests and the wealthy not only get a free pass to pour millions into the electoral process, but have a way to keep their fingerprints off the bucket — or at least to significantly delay disclosure."
Reuters: Credit Suisse exec sought Romney donations from subordinates
"A Credit Suisse executive set off an email chain seeking donations from subordinates for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney that ended up in the hands of non-U.S. citizens, prompting concerns that it could violate laws barring foreign contributions, according to bank sources."
NYT: Super PACs, Super Bad!
Gail Collins and David Brooks debate super PACs.
AP: Super Tuesday ad spending nearly tops $10 million
"The Republican candidates and a few independent groups have spent nearly $10 million on television and radio ads in seven states that vote on Super Tuesday." More at Sunlight Foundation.
NYT: Super PACs, not campaigns, do bulk of ad spending
"The crucial role the 'super PAC' now plays in modern presidential politics has been on vivid display in the week before the Super Tuesday primaries, as these outside groups have all outspent the campaigns and become their de facto advertising arms."
Roll Call: Super PACs target Congressional races
And Eliza Newlin Carney looks at super PAC spending downticket.
Politico: Stephen Colbert: presidential kingmaker?
Colbert for Americans Elect?
NYT: The Speaker and the rainmaker
Speaker Boehner (R-Va.) attended a fundraiser with embattled Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) this weekend. The New York Times editorial board was not pleased.
HuffPost: Vern Buchanan attack ad: Hose Dems hit GOP lawmaker over fundraising schemes
Related to the story above: "In advance of House Speaker John Boehner's Florida fundraising event with Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) on Saturday, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has launched a new ad attacking Buchanan, the House's top Republican fundraiser, for his allegedly illegal campaign finance efforts."
Politico: White House to Congress Dems: expect no money
"President Barack Obama has a bleak message for House and Senate Democrats this year when it comes to campaign cash: You’re on your own."
NY Mag: Anthony Weiner informed the FBI eighteen months ago of Michael Grimm extortion allegations
A new twist to the Michael Grimm controversy: Anthony Weiner! More at Roll Call.
AP: FBI may probe NY Congressman's fundraising
And the FBI might soon get involved too: "The FBI is considering whether to open an investigation into allegations that followers of a New York City rabbi made illegal campaign contributions to U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm, according to a law enforcement official."
Politico: Heated clash led to Eric Cantor aide Brad Dayspring exit
You have to get through all the palace intrigue stuff to see that top Cantor aide will now work for a super PAC helping to elect Congressional Republicans.
Birmingham News: Rep. Spencer Bachus shows big expenses for re-election campaign
"U.S. Rep. Spencer Bachus raised $308,000 in the first two months of the year and has $646,000 cash on hand as of Feb. 22, according to new campaign finance reports."
NY Review of Books: Our corrupt politics: It's not all money
Ezra Klein reviews Lawrence Lessig's and Jack Abramoff's new books.
Buzzfeed: Hustler magazine publisher offers $1 million for DC hanky panky
Larry Flynt once again offers reward for corruption.
WSJ: John Liu campaign defends donation collector disclosure
"New York City Comptroller John Liu’s campaign on Friday refuted allegations that it failed to disclose a complete list of intermediaries — people who collect donations on a candidate’s behalf – in a legally required report with the city’s Campaign Finance Board."
News & Observer: Campaign cash: consider the source
Nice piece highlighting the work of Bob Hall at Democracy North Carolina and the need for better campaign disclosure.
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Political donors got plenty of PennDOT's federal stimulus aid
"More than half of PennDOT's $1 billion in federal stimulus aid went to 20 Pennsylvania companies whose executives donated about $900,000 to state and federal politicians, a Tribune-Review analysis of campaign and contract records shows."