2Day in #OpenGov 10/26/2012

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NEWS ROUNDUP:

Government
  • Congressman broke ethics rules in state legislature: U.S. Rep. David Rivera (R-FL) was charged this week with 11 counts of violating state ethics laws related to financial disclosure, campaign funds, and a $1 million consulting contract he had while serving as a state legislator.  The FBI and IRS are also investigating. (The Miami Herald)
  • Postal Service loses FOIA lawsuit: A U.S. district court has ruled the U.S. Postal Service must tell a California group how many pieces of mail a former school board member sent under a bulk mail permit, which is allegedly connected to shady election maneuvering. USPS had asserted that the information was exempt from disclosure and that releasing the information could cause some customers to stop using USPS services because of privacy concerns. (Federal Times)

Campaign finance

  •  Majority disapprove of money in politics: A majority of Americans believe there is too much corporate money in politics, according to a recent poll. The survey also found broad support for requiring spending disclosure by companies contributing to political campaigns.  (National Journal)
  •  Illinois campaign finance limits stick: Limits on campaign contributions in Illinois are staying through the election thanks to a recent court ruling. A U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied a challenge this week by a PAC in Illinois that wanted an injunction against a 2009 law limiting contributions from individuals, unions or corporations, and PACs. (Pew)
  • Idaho sues for disclosure: The state of Idaho filed a temporary restraining order against a group running ads in support of three ballot measures without disclosing its funding source. The state cited the Idaho Sunshine law that prohibits “gamesmanship” by stringing contributions and expenditures to hide donors. (The Spokesman-Review)
Campaign season
  • Citizens United leads to murky workplace dealings: Is workplace intimidation allowable under the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision? There is some debate over whether, since Citizens United allows corporations to invest resources in politics, employees can be considered resources . . . and be told how to vote. (Roll Call)
  • Texas not hospitable to international vote monitors: Texans are warning international election monitors that they are not welcome in the Lone Star state. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbot said he is concerned the Organization for Security and Cooperation, a Vienna-based group, has a more intrusive intent than simply monitoring elections. (Reuters)

RELEVANT BILLS INTRODUCED:

  • None

HAPPENING TODAY 10/26: 

  • Broken Cities or Civic Renewal? Hudson Institute. Fri. 10/26. 12:00 – 2:00 pm. 1015 15th Street, NW, 6th Floor, Betsy and Walter Stern Conference Center, Washington, DC 20005.

JOB OPPORTUNITIES:

  • None. 

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