The issue at the Federal Election Commission Thursday: Deciding how to say "we can't decide."
Not coming to a decision on the issue of how to regulate political speech has become commonplace at an agency divided between two Democratic commissioners in favor of increasing disclosure of the funders behind political ads and three Republicans opposing reform. With four votes needed to take any action, there are a lot of no decisions.
But on Thursday, things got a bit more frustrating than usual.
Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., who is suing the FEC over donor disclosure
There was a brief ...Continue reading
Under-the-radar political ads: A guide to electioneering communications
Already in this election cycle, nonprofit groups using the cover of "issue advertisements"—thinly disguised attacks or promotions of a particular candidate—have spent about $30 million on general election ads, according to a new study. But only about $4.4 million of buys have been disclosed to the Federal Election Commission.
That’s because the issue ads, also known as "electioneering communications," must be disclosed to the FEC only when they air on TV or radio in the weeks immediately preceding an election. It's a quirk in the election law that offers another way for deep-pocketed donors to ...Continue reading
Super PAC profile: Group focused on healthcare repeal has shadowy sister
This week, Restore America's Voice PAC has disclosed its first political spending of the 2012 election cycle--more than $50,000 worth of phone call fundraising pitches that mention President Barack Obama--but a shadowy nonprofit tied to the group has spent millions more attacking Obama and congressional Democrats for the healthcare reform act.
Restore America's Voice Foundation, a social welfare organization that does not have to disclose its donors, ran ads around the country in 2011 featuring former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. On one of its websites, Repealitnow.org, the group claims that the ads were "the only televised ...Continue reading
Van Hollen Lawsuit vs. FEC Sheds Light on Corporate Campaign Activity
Can corporations and labor unions hide how much money they spend on campaign-related ads by funneling money through other corporations... View ArticleContinue reading
What we’re seeing in online disclosures and documents: Party Favors: National Republican Congressional Committee top spender on indirect expenditures ($22,175,402)... View ArticleContinue reading
A round up of what we’re seeing in online disclosures: American Crossroads reports ad buys against Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo.... View ArticleContinue reading