I have just written this oped for Politico. It begins:
You’ve got to feel bad for the rich and powerful in America. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and a variety of big business groups say if Congress goes back to letting the American people know who is behind campaign attack ads, businesses will face the “palpable” threat of “retaliation” and “reprisals.”
Former Federal Election Commission Chairman Bradley Smith warns in The Wall Street Journal that boycotts based on political beliefs — made possible by the public disclosure of campaign finance data — “endanger the very commerce that enriches us all.” Even the chief justice of the United States, John Roberts, apparently is being “intimidated” (Kathleen Parker), “pressured” (George Will) and “threatened” (Rick Garnett) by that most powerful force in America (law professor and New Republic legal editor) Jeffrey Rosen.
On the right these days, the rhetoric is all about a liberal siege. Despite Republicans’ majority in the House, its filibuster power in the Senate, a sympathetic Supreme Court and the great power of business groups — the language of threats is pervasive. But look beyond the rhetoric and you can see what’s really going on: Those with power want to wield it without being accountable for their actions.
Bloomberg BNA: “The Federal Election Commission deadlocked late May 30 on an advisory opinion request asking whether FEC reporting and disclaimer rules regarding “electioneering communications” apply to ads for a congressional candidate’s plumbing company….The deadlock over the Mullin AO indicated that the FEC may have trouble providing guidance to the regulated political community following the recent court actions that beefed up reporting requirements for electioneering communications.”
Kimberly Strassel takes on Bruce Free’s Center for Political Accountability. This is apparently the second attack in two days and the fifth in five months. Sensing a pattern here?
WaPo reports. MORE from NYT.
TribLive: “Pennsylvania candidates are increasingly turning to the courts to settle election disputes — and vanquish opponents. State court administrators reported on Thursday that Commonwealth Court, which deals with election disputes involving candidates for a state office or higher, has handled a record 131 election cases this year.”
AP: “Four groups petitioned the Minnesota Supreme Court on Wednesday to remove from the November ballot a proposed constitutional amendment requiring voters to present photo IDs at the polls, saying the language that voters will see doesn’t accurately describe the amendment.”
Thomas Sowell has written this article for National Review Online.
The News and Observer reports.
TPM: “The Justice Department sent a letter to Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner Thursday evening demanding the state cease purging its voting rolls because the process it is using has not been cleared under the Voting Rights Act, TPM has learned.”