Clips round up for 10/17/2012
Another no-show for campaign finance issues at the debate last night, though Mitt Romney did hit Obama for attending a fundraiser in Vegas the day after the Benghazi attack.
It's the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's 100th birthday. On Friday, Public Citizen and a host of organizations are going to be rallying in DC against their dark money spending. Details here.
Paul Blumenthal at Huffington Post reported yesterday that of the $180 million spent by independent groups in the first two weeks of October, "the majority of that money -- $117 million -- is being spent by groups that either would not exist or would not be allowed to spend money on direct electoral efforts if it were not for the Supreme Court's 2010 Citizens United decision."
Campaign Finance/Fair Elections
Election Law: 9th Circuit Panel Extends Stay of Montana Campaign Contributions Case
"...the Ninth Circuit motions panel, in an opinion by Judge Bybee, unanimously stayed the district court order which would have had the effect of removing most of the contribution limits in the state of Montana judge weeks before the election."
WaPo: Supreme Court won't get involved in Ohio voting dispute
Voting rights victory yesterday: "The Supreme Court delivered a victory to President Obama’s reelection campaign Tuesday, saying it would not set aside a lower court’s ruling that all Ohio voters be allowed to cast ballots in the three days before the Nov. 6 election." Roll Call.
Center for Public Integrity: Lobbyists rake in $14M for Romney
"More than five-dozen lobbyist-bundlers have raised at least $14 million for Romney’s election efforts, according to reports submitted Monday. That includes 42 who raised nearly $9 million during the third quarter of 2012." These are the only bundlers Romney has released and only because the campaign is required to by law.
Washington Examiner: Oh no! We cant let Romney win! He'll let lobbyists in the White House!
Pretty classic Tim Carney piece on lobbyists, Romney, and the Obama administration.
HuffPost: America 360, pro-Scott Brown super PAC, funded almost entirely by Koch Brother company
Huffpost picks up PCAF's report on the pro-Scott Brown super PAC funded by Bill Koch. Springfield Republican.
NYT: Romney donors meet to schmooze...and raise more
NYT has some details on the Romney fundraiser retreat for Romney's secret bundlers. LA Times, WSJ.
NYT: The Adelson phenomenon spreads among donors
Nick Confessore on the "Adelson phenomenon." He is "just one of several wealthy donors providing overwhelming support to a candidate they are seeking to elect."
Reuters: Top 10 donors to Romney joint victory fund
Reuters looks at the top ten companies giving to Romney/RNC joint fundraising committee. (Hint: Wall Street)
Politico: The top 5 scandal races
"In a Congress that’s had no shortage of scandals... it’s not surprising that a fresh handful of House candidates have serious ethics and legal troubles. But they’re also all engaged in very close races that could determine the size and makeup of the House majority." Grimm, Rivera, Tierney, Richardson, Tarkanian. More on Richardson.
Detroit Free Press: In Michigan congressional races, race for cash tight too
"Michigan's three most competitive congressional races show tight money races, too, according to campaign finance reports released Tuesday."
Des Moines Register: Most incumbents have financial advantage
In Iowa: "The current officeholders in the 1st, 2nd and 4th congressional districts entered the final 37 days of the 2012 campaign with sizable leads in cash on hand, according to reports filed late Monday with the Federal Election Commission. The bankrolls signify the campaigns’ ability to spend in the crucial closing weeks of the election."
LA Times: Pro-Romney super PAC meets alongside donor event
"Among the series of events held Tuesday at the Waldorf Astoria to thank the wealthy donors backing Mitt Romney was a session with the leaders of Restore Our Future, a 'super PAC' prohibited from coordinating with his campaign. " CLC's Paul S. Ryan: "These super PACs are connected at the hip with the candidates' campaigns."
Bloomberg: Military personnel donations favor Obama over Romney
"President Obama has received almost twice as much in campaign contributions from U.S. military and Defense Department personnel as Republican challenger Mitt Romney...""
Mother Jones: Business group supports women, also supports Todd Akin
The Crossroads/big buziness backed group, NFIB, is really excited about Todd Akin.
Kansas City Star: Todd Akin campaign keeps fundraising numbers under wraps
The Akin campaign has mailed off its fundraising reports, but won't release any numbers to press.
Chicago Daily Herald: Duckworth outraises Walsh, but super PAC changes game
"Eighth Congressional District Democratic challenger Tammy Duckworth far outpaced Republican U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh in fundraising in the third quarter, according to campaign finance reports filed at midnight Monday with the Federal Election Commission. But outside spending by SuperPACs is greatly supplementing Walsh’s fundraising efforts."
Roll Call: Challengers outraise vulnerable House incumbents
"New fundraising reports filed this week showed many of the most vulnerable House members were outraised by their opponent in the final quarter before Election Day."
USA Today: Obscure Ohio-bases super PAC spends $1.1M on Connecticut race
"A little-known super PAC this week pumped $1.1 million into advertising to influence a competitive U.S. House race in Connecticut, but so far has only disclosed $10,500 in contributions."
AP: Super PAC started by Karl Rove wades into Maine Senate race with ad criticizing King
It seems Karl Rove isn't expecting a Sen. Angus King to caucus with Republicans: " Sensing an opportunity to keep Maine’s Senate seat in Republican hands, a super PAC started by GOP strategist Karl Rove is airing television ads in the state for the first time as part of a $5 million blitz in a handful of states."
Washington Times: Bain Capital is largest NRCC donor
"Bain Capital, Mitt Romney's former firm, was the top employer among donors to the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) in September, underscoring the extent to which Mr. Romney's associates in the financial sector are financing not just his presidential bid, but the gamut of Republican activities."
Politico: Allen West plagued by scam PACs
"In the presidential race, and tied to the coattails of Republican firebrand Rep. Allen West, a cottage industry has sprung up in which groups with such seemingly innocuous names as 'Patriots for Economic Freedom' use high-profile campaigns and big names like West to raise money for themselves and build their email lists." Except, that money doesn't really go to the candidates.
NYT: Attack ads, by outside groups with murky ties, shape 3 NY Senate races
In the NY State Senate: "Outside groups are on track to funnel at least $2 million into those three races — a large sum of money in legislative campaigns, where hundreds of votes can separate the candidates."
The Day: Most local legislative candidates qualify for public funds
Connecticut public financing going strong: "New campaign finance filings for state races show that most of the region's legislative candidates have qualified their campaigns for state funding."
Bangor Daily News: Bangor residents call out state senator for ‘grievous infraction’ of campaign ethics, Farnham says it was clerical slip-up
"A group of Bangor residents has called for state Sen. Nichi Farnham, R-Bangor, to be held accountable for what they called “one of the most egregious campaign violations” in the history of Maine Legislative elections."
NYT: California ballot initiatives, born in populism, now come from billionaires
Billionaires are spending big in CA: "Supporters say the ballot initiatives will help break the partisan gridlock in Sacramento. Critics say that the increasing involvement of rich individuals perverts the original intent of the initiatives, established by reformers like California’s Gov. Hiram W. Johnson to empower the electorate and curtail the influence of the Gilded Age’s special interests."
News Journal: Campaign finance probe nears end
In Delaware: "After 16 months of interviews, legal research and document examination, investigators looking into campaign finance irregularities in Delaware are wrapping up their probe, according to the independent prosecutor leading the inquiry."