“Democratic donors begin mobilizing to raise money for Harris if she’s the nominee”

Politico:

Allies of Vice President Kamala Harris have begun courting Democratic donors to provide financial support for her if President Joe Biden drops out of the 2024 race.

One Democratic donor adviser has begun collecting pledges from female Democratic donors to support Harris, while a women’s political organization has begun speaking to its donor base in an effort to ensure an initial wave of contributions to a potential Harris campaign, according to people familiar with the efforts….

The donor adviser … said five donors had already committed to potentially contribute six-figure donations to a Democratic ticket with Harris as the principal. But that effort is still nascent, and the status of the campaign funding would be unclear if multiple women are ultimately in the running for the nomination, the person emphasized.

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“In Arizona, a court ruling narrows the path for registering to vote without proof of citizenship”

Votebeat explains:

Arizona residents who try to register to vote with the widely used state form will have their registration rejected unless they provide proof of U.S. citizenship, under a temporary ruling Thursday from a federal appeals court.

Previously, residents without citizenship documents would have been allowed to use the state form, which almost all Arizonans use, to get registered, but they could vote only in federal elections — for U.S. House, Senate and president. That’s because Arizona law requires voters to provide proof of citizenship to register, whereas federal law requires only an attestation that a voter is a citizen, but not documentation proving it.

Under a 2013 U.S. Supreme Court ruling [Arizona v. ITCA], the state must permit voters who registered without citizenship proof to cast ballots in federal elections, so Arizona has maintained separate rolls of so-called federal-only voters.

Thursday’s decision, by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, granted a partial stay of a lower-court ruling that struck down newer Arizona laws on federal-only voters. As long as the stay is in place, those voters can register to vote and cast ballots in federal elections only if they use a federal voter registration form, something few people currently do.

The Ninth Circuit’s order partially granting a stay in Mi Familia Vota v. Fontes is here. Democracy Docket has more on the case.

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What Happens to Biden’s Money If He Steps Aside?

WaPo’s answer, amid growing whispers that the President may be coming to terms with reality:

If Biden withdraws from the race, the dollars in his campaign account are considered “excess campaign funds” that can be contributed to the Democratic National Committee or to an independent expenditure committee. But if he withdraws before he is the official nominee of the party, he could face limits in donating to other candidates.

Some Democratic lawyers and operatives, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal discussions, argue that because Kamala Harris’s name is on the paperwork filed with the Federal Election Commission to set up the committee, Biden could hand control of the account to Harris if he were to step aside. But several Republican campaign finance lawyers noted that that legal theory has not been tested. Prominent Republican lawyer Charlie Spies recently argued in the Wall Street Journal that both Biden and Harris would have to be officially nominated by their party before a handoff of the account could occur.

If the Democratic Party chooses a nominee who is someone other than Harris, the Biden campaign could still transfer its funds to the DNC or a super PAC that intends to back the new ticket.

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What’s Good for the Donald Is Good for the Hunter

AP reports on Hunter Biden’s motion to dismiss the special counsel’s case against him, based on Judge Cannon’s dismissal of the classified documents case against Trump:

President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, asked federal judges on Thursday to dismiss tax and gun cases against him, citing a ruling in Florida this week that threw out a separate prosecution of former President Donald Trump.

The requests in federal court in Delaware and California underscore the potential ramifications of U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon’s dismissal Monday of the classified documents case against Trump and the possibility that it could unsettle the legal landscape surrounding Justice Department special counsels.

Both Hunter Biden and Trump were prosecuted by special counsels appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland. In dismissing the Trump case, Cannon ruled that the appointment of the special counsel who prosecuted Trump, Jack Smith, violated the Constitution because he was appointed directly to the position by Garland instead of being nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate.

Update: Hunter Biden’s motions to dismiss the Delaware and California cases against him may be found here and here. There is a difference between the special counsels in the Trump and Hunter Biden cases. As the Hill notes, “unlike [Jack] Smith, who came from outside the Justice Department to investigate Trump, [Hunter Biden prosecutor David] Weiss was confirmed by the Senate to his position as U.S. attorney for Delaware.” Accordingly, there’s an argument that his appointment was permissible under 28 U.S.C. § 510, which allows the Attorney General to “make such provisions as he considers appropriate authorizing the performance by any other officer, employee, or agency of the Department of Justice of any function of the Attorney General.” So maybe not so good for Hunter, although he argues that the Attorney General didn’t just delegate authority to Weiss but appointed him to a new position.

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