Clips Round-up for 8/1/12
House Democrats are holding a press conference today on Capitol Hill to "rally with the public in support of the Democratic DARE (Disclose, Amend, Reform, Elect) agenda to clean up our electoral system and return power in Washington to the voters." Public Campaign Action Fund's Nick Nyhart will also speak.
Politico: "Mitt Romney will hold a fundraiser with some of the biggest donors in GOP politics in Aspen on Thursday night on the sidelines of a closed-door Republican Governors Association high-rollers event." Attendees include Karl Rove and the president of American Crossroads and a top aide to the Koch Brothers', both, of course, handling outside--independent--money and groups that are working to elect Romney.
And for a little fun: a clip from the new movie, The Candidate, in which Will Ferrell's character does some fundraising.
Campaign Finance/Fair Elections
NYT: Partisan rifts hinder efforts to improve US voting system
"The most recent high-profile fights have been about voter identification requirements and whether they are aimed at stopping fraud or keeping minority group members and the poor from voting. But there are worse problems with voter registration, ballot design, absentee voting and electoral administration."
Brennan Center: Brennan Center defends West Virginia judicial public financing program
"The Brennan Center for Justice filed a lawsuit in the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia, seeking to compel election officials to comply with the state’s public financing program for judicial elections."
LA Times: Sen. Whitehouse vows to continue effort to alter Citizens United
"Efforts to alter the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United ruling, which helped usher in multimillion-dollar super PACs, have died in Congress, as recently as two weeks ago. And the Supreme Court itself upheld the ruling in its most recent term. But Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) is still convinced that Citizens United will be reversed."
Utica Observer Dispatch: Campaign finance reform should be Cuomo priority
"It’s why we need campaign finance reform — a long-discussed idea that was among Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s stated goals when he was running for office in 2010. As a candidate, Cuomo said the current system allows wealthy campaign donors to have a louder voice than average citizens; he discussed the issue again in his State of the State message earlier this year. It’s time for the governor to crank up the effort to get this done."
NYT: Obama supporters barraged with pleas for cash
"The urgent and repeated appeals, sent to millions of Mr. Obama’s supporters via e-mail and text messages, are a vivid reminder that the president’s campaign is likely to raise significantly less than Mitt Romney and Republicans for the third month in a row in July."
ABC: Obama donates $5,000 to his campaign
"President Obama made his first, personal contribution to his 2012 campaign on Monday with a $5,000 online donation, the campaign said today."
ProPublica: New questions about Sheldon Adelson's casino operations in Macau
Must-read on new questions into the investigation of Adelson's casino operations. "The company's recent court filings raise questions about whether Las Vegas Sands has been fully cooperative with the federal investigations of the company." Even the Macau government is investigating.
LA Times: Crossroads GPS tries to squeak past disclosure window
"A hard-hitting new TV spot by the conservative advocacy group Crossroads GPS is scheduled to air within 30 days before the Democratic National Convention, a buy that should force it to disclose i ts donors. But the organization is counting on confusing guidance from the Federal Election Commissionto get it off the hook."
Politico: GOP: WH, Messina "failed on disclosure"
"House Republicans are accusing the Obama White House — and the president’s reelection campaign manager Jim Messina — of purposefully skirting disclosure rules and negating the administration’s often-repeated claim to be “the most transparent administration in history.”
HuffPost: Barack Obama fundraising close to 2008 record-setting pace
"Obama's reelection effort is actually much closer to raising the same amount of money as his first campaign did than political reporters or his fundraising appeals would have you believe."
Bloomberg: Republicans outraising Democratic rivals in House races
"Of the 19 Republicans most in danger of losing their House seats in November, including Hayworth, 14 had more money in the bank as of June 30 than their Democratic opponents."
Roll Call: Public says lobbyists bad, lobbying good
"Most Americans, in a shock to no one, have a negative view of companies that hire lobbyists, according to a just-released poll by the nonpartisan Public Affairs Council. The survey, though, did reveal that a majority of the public (52 percent) finds lobbying itself acceptable, especially when corporations do it to protect jobs, open new markets or reduce business costs." The Hill.
The Hill: Sen. Cornyn prods stingy candidates
"Sen. John Cornyn (Texas), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, is making a final push to prod his colleagues to contribute more to the mission to capture the Senate."
ProPublica: Lobbyist-linked group fotted bill for Rep. Burton's Bahrain trip
On Dan Burton's trip to Bahrain: "The $20,966 cost of the trip, including business-class flights for Burton and his wife, was paid by a nonprofit group, the Bahrain American Council, created last year by the lobbying and public relations firm Policy Impact Communications to promote the Bahraini government line in Washington."
iWatch: Super PACs help tea party candidate win Senate runoff in Texas
"In a Texas-sized spending battle that attracted more than $14 million in outside money, Ted Cruz upset the party establishment favorite Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in the in the state’s contentious Republican primary runoff election for U.S. Senate."
Roll Call: Steve LaTourette: Congress doesn't function
"Rep. Steven LaTourette said Tuesday that he was leaving a Congress that has become too polarized to function, a far cry from the institution in which he spent the past 18 years."
Des Moines Register: Charges, countercharges fly in King-Vilsack race
"The Iowa Democratic Party on Monday asked the Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate whether King violated the House ethics code by launching political attacks on Vilsack during the course of a video town hall meeting carried on Livestream last week. The event was promoted by his congressional office on his official Facebook page, through a mass email from his congressional staff, and by his congressional press aides on Twitter, Democrats said."
NYT: In 2013 race, New York city regulators prepare for super PAC effect
"New York City campaign regulators are girding for a wave of independent spending in local campaigns next year, saying that moneyed interest groups and wealthy individuals are watching the 'super PAC phenomenon in the presidential campaign this year and preparing to adapt it for local use."
Alaska Dispatch: Shell Oil top contributor in campaign to stop Alaska coastline initiative
"As Royal Dutch Shell prepares to explore for offshore oil in Alaska's Arctic, the company is waging an effort against a ballot initiative that supporters say would restore the voice of Alaskans in federal coastal decisions."