Clips Round-up for 11/5/12
AP story on donors and diversity: "Americans living in predominantly wealthy, white neighborhoods account for nearly all the sizable campaign contributions in this year's presidential election, according to an Associated Press analysis, even as the presidential candidates have aggressively courted Hispanics." In Spanish.
What did October look like? Politico: "More than half a billion dollars. That’s the monster mountain of money outside political groups collectively spent in October to fill the nation’s airwaves, scorch your phone lines and flood your mailbox with flyers that directly promote or attack federal candidates."
And Washington Post editorial on spending in 2012: "None of this is healthy. Outsized contributions by a wealthy few threaten to distort the political system." Editorials in USA Today and Maine, Oregon, and California.
Campaign Finance/Fair Elections
NYT: Upholding Democracy, ballot by ballot
Strong NYT editorial on voting rights this weekend begins, "This year, voting is more than just the core responsibility of citizenship; it is an act of defiance against malicious political forces determined to reduce access to democracy." Ilyse Hogue on CNN, Rick Hasen at Sacramento Bee. Shenanigans already started over the weekend in Ohio and Florida (and Florida).
LA Times: California Supreme Court orders Arizona nonprofit to turn over records
Pretty crazy story over the past week or two: "In an extraordinarily swift decision, the California Supreme Court unanimously ordered an Arizona nonprofit to turn over records to the state's campaign finance watchdog on Sunday." Looks like they did.
Something to watch on Tuesday - the Montana "corporations aren't people" initiative has 59% support, including 45% of Republicans.
HuffPost: Forbes 400 contribute record amount to presidential campaigns, super PACs
"More than half of the nation's 400 richest citizens have contributed money to help elect President Barack Obama or former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney to the White House." PCAF has been following this story for months on its Pinterest boards.
Politico: The new normal: $9 million for a rural house race
Mike McIntyre's first race cost $450,000, today: "nearly $9 million has been spent on the race for the conservative 7th District and the 733,500 residents represented by McIntyre in the southeastern corner of North Carolina."
NYT: Super PACs provide last-minute rush of campaign spending
Secret until after the election: "A last-minute burst of below-the-radar cash has begun flooding into the national elections, most of it financing advertising against Democrats, often in markets where television time is still cheap. But unlike the well-known outside groups that have dominated the airwaves until now, many of the new spenders did not formally exist a few weeks ago." Second NYT story on this issue.
NYT: Some voters are spelling out their indecision on their donation checks
"Meet the undecided donors. They are not lobbyists or other members of the political class — donors with a professional imperative to hedge their bets — but ordinary voters whose back-and-forth donations mirror the undulations of the swing electorate."
Sunlight: Party Time's year in review extravaganza
Cool: Sunlight Foundation has mapped out its party time fundraiser database. Thousands of events.
Politico: RIP positive ads in 2012
"A full 86 percent of Obama’s television advertising and 79 percent of Romney’s has been negative, according to the Wesleyan Media Project, which tracks political advertising."
HuffPost: Karl Rove-backed groups are largest single outside force in 2012 election
"The two groups, founded by Republican political operative Karl Rove and others in 2010, have already spent $271 million, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission and press releases."
LA Times: Wall Street donors opening their checkbooks for Mitt Romney
"For every dollar that Wall Street has given to Obama this election, it has given three to Romney."
CPI: Election's biggest corporate donor an enigma with $5.3 million in contributions
More on that strange Tennessee donation: "The biggest corporate contributor in the 2012 election so far doesn’t appear to make anything — other than very large contributions to a conservative super PAC."
Roll Call: Nancy Pelosi raised $12.9 million in October
"Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi raised an eye-popping $12.9 million in October for House Democrats, a spokesman said."
Sunlight: No donors to report but $1.5 million to spend for Romney
"A political action committee that so far has reported no donations in the current campaign cycle has just unleashed $1.5 million in Internet advertising to help Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney."
Sunlight: Eleven House races drawing 11th-hour outside money
"Sunlight's weekly survey of independent campaign expenditures found that some congressional contests that hadn't previously registered on our radar were suddenly drawing lots of outside cash late in the campaign."
Montana Standard: Tester-Rehberg race: $30M in outside cash
$30M in outside money in Montana - on top of the $18M the candidate's spent.
WBEZ: Romney backers host last-minute Chicago fundraiser
"Supporters of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney are holding last-minute fundraiser in President Barack Obama’s hometown Friday night, just a few days before voters head to the polls to cast ballots in what has become a very tight race for the White House."
Record: Non-party spending in 18th district ranks in US top 10
"Outside groups supporting either Rep. Nan Hayworth or her Democratic opponent, Sean Patrick Maloney, had poured more than $5.2 million into a blizzard of commercials and mailings for the competitive race as of Friday." Speaking of NY-18, watch Sean Maloney nail a question about money-in-politics during a debate. Lots of money in IL-8 too.
Star-Telegram: Texas donors pour $61 million into election
"Now, just days before Election Day -- as the battle between President Barack Obama and GOP nominee Mitt Romney reaches a fevered pace -- those Texas donations have added up to more than $61 million, second only to the $102 million from Californians."
Tennessean: Tennesseans open their wallets to help their candidates
"An analysis by the Tennessean Washington Bureau of data provided by the Federal Election Commission shows the growing variety of ways donors from the Volunteer State make their presence felt — and the staggering sums now moving through the political system." Similar story in Minnesota.
NaJo: Candidates become partisan stereotypes in super PAC era
"The 2012 elections have been marked by a startling diffusion of political power away from traditional hubs and toward outside groups -- in both the financial and political sense."
HuffPost: Jim Walton, Walmart heir, accused of campaign finance violations
Aggregate total violation: "An advocacy group on Friday filed a Federal Election Commission (FEC) complaint alleging that Walmart heir Jim Walton violated campaign finance laws by contributing more than the individual legal maximum to candidates during the 2008 election cycle."
Gannett: Brown, Mandel spare no campaign expense
Not including outside money: "Overall, the two candidates have spent almost $30 million so far this election cycle, making it the fifth most expensive Senate race in terms of spending, according to a tally by the Center for Responsive Politics"
The Hill: Former lawmakers sit on stockpiles of cash
"Former members of Congress are sitting on huge campaign war chests, with one ex-senator topping $10 million in his account." Evan Bayh, $10M!
San Luis Obispo Tribune: California GOP files complaint against Capps
"The chairman of the California Republican Party has filed an ethics complaint against Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, requesting an investigation into whether she violated House rules by renting a room to a staff member and failing to report it on financial disclosure records and tax returns."
LVRJ: Berkley loans her campaign $250,000 in tight Senate race
"Rep. Shelley Berkley loaned her campaign $250,000 in the homestretch of a heated U.S. Senate race, the first time either Nevada candidate has needed to tap personal funds."
Politico: Journalists open wallets for Obama and Romney
"Numerous journalists — self-identified reporters, editors and photographers affiliated with established news organizations — contributed money in September and October to the campaigns of President Barack Obama or Mitt Romney."
WaPo: Tom Toles: House values are going up
Tom Toles' latest cartoon.
Mother Jones: Charts: How much have the Kochs spent on the 2012 election?
"So just how much money have the brothers poured into the election? That's a tricky question, as we'll see in a moment. But first, how much are the Kochs, their companies, and Americans for Prosperity (the dark money group they're connected to) known to have spent so far?"
OC Register: DIsney pours cash into Anaheim election
Mickey Mouse is making it rain in Anaheim: "The Walt Disney Co. is pumping more than $300,000 into local political campaigns, particularly the City Council race in Disneyland's hometown, according to campaign finance reports."
Courier Journal: GOP super PAC unleashes late spending blitz on Kentucky legislative races
"In a last-minute spending blitz, a national Republican Super PAC has spent more than $350,000 to help elect Republicans in Tuesday’s elections for the Kentucky House and Senate."