February 19, 2013

"The Supreme Court reentered the controversial field of campaign finance Tuesday, agreeing to consider a Republican challenge..."

"... to decades-old limits on the total amount a person can contribute to candidates, political parties and political action committees."

21 comments:

traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

If the SCOTUS enforces the First Amendment, then the bundlers will lose clout and crony capitalism will weaken.

The inane limits are only for those that are not disciplined enough not to get caught.

Bundlers are presently paying their business contacts an offset in disguised payment for the donations by Hus/wife teams of the contacts employees.

Like prohibition, it is corrupting a normal business by deeming it illegal and letting everyone cheat as the Pols wink and nod.



Revenant said...

Without the limits, she said in a statement, "corruption, or at the very least the appearance of corruption, would be the rule rather than the exception in Washington."

"This is needed to preserve the good reputation of Congress" is an excellent candidate for the "silliest constitutional arguments" thread.

edutcher said...

Of course, the Demos will ignore anything they don't like, but at least they'll be on record.

Revenant said...

Citizens United was a big win for freedom of speech because it removed a content-based restriction on peoples' speech. It allowed for more, and freer, speech.

This is sketchier. Why allow unlimited giving to politicians when the law doesn't even allow unlimited giving to *family* without applying a gift or death tax? If there is a speech right to give money to a politician, why isn't there a similar speech right to give tax-free money to anyone else you admire the work of?

Mind you, I think you should be able to give as much as you want to whomever you want without anyone having to pay taxes on it. But so long as we're not living in that particular libertarian utopia, I don't see any reason why POLITICIANS, of all people, should receive a special status.

n.n said...

Unless we can control contributions from foreigners, including: Chinese, Arabs, etc., and through untraceable paths, including credit card transactions, then there is no legitimate argument to control Americans' contributions.

Oh, one more thing, we would also need to control special interest groups, including publicly funded employees, who will vote in their best interest, without consideration for taxpayers. This would included, but is not limited to, public unions (which really should be illegal in their current form).

Also, if a candidate is free to ignore laws at will, then we must consider a plan to mitigate risk of illegal and corrupt behavior.

Methadras said...

Here's to McCain Feingold dying like the 5 headed bastard it is.

mccullough said...

Rev,

This case isn't challenging contribution limits to single candidates, its challenging the law banning aggregate contributions. So if someone wants to donate $2,500 to each of the 435 Republican or Democratic house candidates, they can't because it exceeds the aggregate limit.

This will be struck down quickly.

Pierre Purvis said...

as Marie implied I am amazed that anyone able to profit $9644 in one month on the computer. have you seen this web link http://fly26.com

Larry J said...

"Even with the limits, corruption, is the rule rather than the exception in Washington."

FIFY

Don't like bribery? Change the name to "campaign contributions" and make them legal. Easy. Want to give money to a politician? Hire the spouse to a cushy job with a fat paycheck. Nothing to it.

The Godfather said...

“It has become readily apparent that there are a number of justices who are willing to usurp Congress’s role as legislator when it comes to matter of campaign finance,” said Tara Malloy, senior counsel for the Campaign Legal Center.

And there are a number of justices who are willing to usurp the role of State legislators when it comes to abortion.

So what? (Or "What difference does it make?"). We have a Constitution that imposes limits on what the Federal and (to a lesser extent) State governments can do. In the case of campaign financing, there's something called the First Amendment. If the contribution limits violate the First Amendment, it's the job of the Supreme Court to so determine. So the supporters of the campaign contribution limits need to talk about why the limits don't violate the First Amendment and stop wasting our time talking about "usurping" the powers of Congress.

sonicfrog said...

In my opinion, only a person, one who is flesh and blood, should be allowed to donate to politics, period. No corporations, unions, "pacs" of any kind should be able to donate.

That said, should a person be allowed to give as much as they want? Yes. But it should be above board. The public should have access to all the names of donors. If you are going to fund a campaign or bill that affects the public directly, the public has a right / interest to know who funded it.

traditionalguy said...

Sonicfrog...Do you propose ending cash and auditing every human digital transaction with full lie detector tests of everyone? If not, then why live in a noble LaLa Land where everybody keeps rules.

Donating to political campaigns is already legal under the First Amendment. Saying that donating is illegal changes nothing but makes the law a bad joke.

sonicfrog said...

traditionalguy said...

Sonicfrog...Do you propose ending cash and auditing every human digital transaction with full lie detector tests of everyone? If not, then why live in a noble LaLa Land where everybody keeps rules.


Your comment makes no sense. Please elaborate.

Revenant said...

only a person, one who is flesh and blood, should be allowed to donate to politics, period.

In other words, only the rich will have a voice in politics.

Texan99 said...

"Why allow unlimited giving to politicians when the law doesn't even allow unlimited giving to *family* without applying a gift or death tax?"

Not that I want to support either a gift tax or an estate tax, but those don't involve freedom of speech. They are not political expressions.

virgil xenophon said...

I used to think unlimited contributions from ANY source--individual or corporate, foreign or domestic, should be allowed as long as they are identified, i.e., transparancy so that the public should know the kind of people to which a candidate appeals. The philosophiocal reasoning behind this is that donors don't "buy" politicians; they contribute to people who's views are already congruent with that of their own. Conservatives never tried to "buy" Teddy Kennedy with campaign contributions any more than the left contributed to Ronald Regan in order to "capture" him.

But the ominous trend in the last few years of leftist thugs personally (as well as physically) attacking individual conservative donors, demonstrating on their front lawns in attempts to intimidate, as well as not only boycotting their businesses (as well as physically attacking some)but carrying out well-funded national smear campaigns in order to destroy their business have lead me to re-think my position as to the advisability of total transparency. I guess I'm for a "modified limited hang-out" now regarding the total transparency bit. Still don't believe in contribution limits, tho..

Revenant said...

Not that I want to support either a gift tax or an estate tax, but those don't involve freedom of speech. They are not political expressions

They are as much "speech" as a gift of money to a politician is.

Texan99 said...

"They are as much "speech" as a gift of money to a politician is."

I'm on your side -- I'd like to think this is true -- but I can't easily get there. How do you figure? Unless the purpose of the gift is to encourage the family member to enact public policy, I'm just not getting the connection. Wouldn't this rule apply equally to arguing that any time money changes hands it's protected by the First Amendment? Or nearly any interaction between two people?

sonicfrog said...

I said:

only a person, one who is flesh and blood, should be allowed to donate to politics, period.

Revenant replied...


In other words, only the rich will have a voice in politics.

How is that not the case now? Poor people don't have any money. They have little clout as far as campaign contributions go. I know you may think unions are the solution, but we see over and over that unions donate to support the best interests of the union, not the workers who make up the union. And because they belong to one party, that party just is that responsive to them anyway.

Texan99 said...

Isn't the idea that poor people can get a voice only by bundling their political donations? And that usually requires giving the donation in the name of an association, whether it's a union, a PAC, or a corporation.

I don't know the answer. I would like voters to have access to information about where a politician gets his donations, so they can decide whether to vote for him. I don't want voters to be restricted in their ability to donate. There's a conflict there, for voters who would like to maintain their privacy.