Posted on October 26, 2012 by Charles N. Davis
This is an issue worth watching closely…as the folks who argued that transparency was the antidote to all that campaign cash post Citizens United change their tune abruptly and now argue for donor secrecy:
Idaho’s Secretary of State wants a court to order a group campaigning for Idaho’s ballot referenda to reveal its donors.
Education Voters of Idaho gave more than $200,000 to another, affiliated group for ads supporting propositions 1, 2, and 3. Those ask voters if they want to keep Idaho’s Students Come First education laws. Education Voters refused an ultimatum from Secretary of State Ben Ysursa to reveal its donors. Ysursa maintains Idaho’s Sunshine Law says Education Voters has to disclose. Education Voters insists the First Amendment and the Supreme Court decision Citizens United says it doesn’t.
Anthony Johnstone has some experience with state election law vs. Citizens United. As Montana’s state solicitor he worked on acase that went to the Supreme Court.
“Citizens United says in general, disclosure by political committees including disclosure of their funding sources, does not violate the First Amendment,” Johnstone says. “States have the power to require organizations that spend money in political campaigns to tell the voters where their money comes from.”
Filed under: 3. Access law, secrecy | Tagged: Citizens United, disclosure, donors, Idaho, Secretary of State of Idaho | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 23, 2012 by Charles N. Davis
Wow. Just wow. Recall how the great leveler in the wake of Citizens United was supposed to be the transparency of political spending? Well, not so much…
The National Association of Broadcasters is asking a federal appeals court to block a rulepassed by the Federal Communications Commission last month requiring TV stations to post political ad data on the Internet.
In a petition for review filed Monday with the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., the broadcast industry group argues that the rule is “arbitrary, capricious, in excess of the Commission’s statutory authority inconsistent with the First Amendment, and otherwise not in accordance with law.”
The association represents, among others, the parent companies of NBC, CBS, Fox and the broadcasting arm of the Washington Post.
TV stations have long been required to keep detailed information about who buys political ads, how much they paid, and when spots run. But the information is currently kept only on paper at stations. The FCC’s new rule, which has not yet gone into effect, would require stations to post the information to a new government website.
Filed under: Transparency | Tagged: Citizens United, Federal Communications Commission, National Association of Broadcasters, Television station | Leave a comment »