Clips round up for 3/14/2012
Campaign Finance/Fair Elections
NY Post: A boon for the little guy
A series of letters in response to last week's op-ed in the Post about NYC's public financing system. Writers include CCNY's Susan Lerner, Gene Russianoff at NYPIRG, and Amy Lopreset, head of the NYC Campaign Finance Board.
AP: Judge nixes part of Illinois campaign finance law
"A federal judge struck down part of Illinois' campaign finance law as unconstitutional Tuesday, ruling that restrictions on fundraising by independent political action committees violated the First Amendment."
NYT: Obama campaign fears uphill climb raising "super PAC" money
"With the general election campaign just a few months away, Mr. Obama’s allies are under growing pressure to raise money rapidly for Democratic-leaning independent groups, warning his supporters that the huge cash advantage mustered by Republican groups could prove decisive this fall, overwhelming Mr. Obama despite his own formidable fund-raising apparatus." More at WaPo.
NaJo: Big bucks already in McConnell's coffers
Mitch McConnell is prepping for his 2014 run, which includes spending "hours dialing for dollars once the Senate wraps up nightly" Here's what David Donnelly has to say about that.
NY Post: Mitt Romney comes to NY for fundraiser with key backers
Romney won't let losses in Mississippi and Alabama keep him down. PCAF also looked at who's attending this fundraiser. He'll be greeted by protesters too.
Mother Jones: Rick Santorum in '94: PACS have "undue influence"
Andy Kroll at Mother Jones did some digging on Santorum: "But during his first Senate campaign in 1994, Santorum sounded much like a campaign finance reformer, advocating the type of restrictions he now says strangle free speech."
Roll Call: Liberals join Cato squabble
On United Republic's protest yesterday opposing the Koch takeover of Cato.
ABC: Watchdogs call on presidential campaigns to name big fundraisers
"Nine government watchdog groups today called on the 2012 presidential candidates to lift the veil of secrecy that shrouds their biggest fundraisers, the so-called "bundlers" who use their connections to steer millions of dollars from well-heeled donors to the campaigns of their choice. "
National Journal: Learning to love the super PAC
"Last month, I argued that the influx of outside money into the political system was a boon for competition, putting on notice powerful incumbents from President Obama on down. And on the congressional side, we’re already beginning to see the dramatic implications when underdog challengers get help from third-party groups in getting their message out."
Sunlight Foundation: Stealthy wealthy: How Harold Simmons' political giving has benefited his business empire
Nice Sunlight Foundation look at Harold Simmons.
Plain Dealer: Josh Mandel flew to Bahamas to give speech, raise cash from payday lenders
"Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, already criticized by Democrats for missing official state meetings, flew to the Bahamas last Friday to give a speech to the payday lending industry, The Plain Dealer has confirmed."
Daily Beast: Democrats belatedly find the benefits of Citizens United
"While Republican outside groups have often had a small number of wealthy backers, relatively easily kept on the same page, the shift is critical for Democrats, whose donors tend to be bickering and competing interest groups, particularly labor unions, that can be difficult to herd together."
NYT: Organized labor sets course for election
"As the A.F.L.-C.I.O.’s winter meeting opened here on Tuesday, its political director mapped out organized labor’s plans for the 2012 campaign and how unions will respond to what he says will be $500 million in “super PAC” ads backing Republicans."
WaPo: Romney's struggles and a super PAC flop: A look at key moments in Tuesday's primaries
Restore our Future's spending in the south "in the Deep South didn’t seem to have an impact."
Kasich lobbies Obama during basketball game
"Sitting with President Barack Obama at a basketball game could present a choice opportunity to build a personal relationship, break down some of that partisan barrier. But for Ohio Governor John Kasich, a Republican, it was also a chance to lobby the president on shale gas."
Politico: Kaine super PAC proposal: No secret money
"A day after the revelation of a Super PAC forming to assist George Allen, the presumptive Democratic Senate nominee in Virginia has sent a letter to his GOP opponent in an attempt to sideline the infusion of outside anonymous money. "
USA Today: Super PAC ads make little-known health care board an issue
"Conservative groups are gearing up to spend millions of dollars in advertising this year to hammer President Obama and congressional Democrats over a little-known health care board that is at the heart of a heated debate on holding down Medicare costs."
HuffPo: Ohio super PAC under review by U.S. Attorney for robocalls
"he mysterious, unregistered "Victory Ohio Super PAC" that made robocalls to thousands of Ohio residents before a congressional primary election last week is the subject of a preliminary review by the local U.S. Attorney and the FBI."
NYT: Why I am leaving Goldman Sachs
An open resignation letter by a Goldman Sachs employee. Ouch! "It makes me ill how callously people talk about ripping their clients off."
Arizona Republic: Junker faces up to 2.5 years prison in Fiesta Bowl scheme
"Former Fiesta Bowl Chief Executive John Junker on Tuesday pleaded guilty in federal court to a single felony conspiracy charge stemming from his role in an illegal campaign-finance scheme."
Examiner: FBI ethics probe forces Ohio Dem lawmaker to resign
"Charges stemming from an FBI investigation that includes bribery forced Ohio House Representative W. Carlton Weddington to resign his Columbus district seat Tuesday. Continue reading on Examiner.com FBI ethics probe forces Ohio Dem lawmaker to resign"
NYT: Campaign finance lessons for disillusioned Asian-American group
"Concerned about the dampening effect that a fund-raising scandal involving the city comptroller could have on Asian-American voters, the New York City Campaign Finance Board held a workshop on Monday night on the dos and don’ts of campaign finance. "