One year ago, fateful argument was held
Stunning Statistics of the Week:
- Amount spent on television ads in Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s home state of Nevada since June: $7.5 million
- Amount spent on those ads by outside groups: $2.8 million
- Amount Republican candidate Sharron Angle has spent on ads: $2.6 million
- Amount Reid has spent: $1.9 million
One year ago, fateful Citizens United argument was held
A year ago this week, arguments were held before the U.S. Supreme Court in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. A lot has transpired since then. In January, the court tossed out a century’s worth of campaign finance doctrine and ruled that corporations can spend unlimited amounts to influence elections. A spate of legislation has been proposed, a drive for a constitutional amendment is under way, states have had to dismantle their campaign finance laws and more.
Corporations use charities to influence lawmakers
Lawmakers are mixing charitable and political agendas, creating yet another loophole that ultimately allows more corporate influence in Congress, The New York Times reports. The paper found that “at least two dozen charities that lawmakers or their families helped create or run routinely accept donations from businesses seeking to influence them.” Among these corporations are AT&T, Chevron, General Dynamics, Morgan Stanley and Eli Lilly.
House and Senate candidates’ take: $1.2 billion and counting
The Associated Press has looked at financial reports and crunched the numbers. Here’s the result: Candidates for the House of Representatives and Senate have raised nearly $1.2 billion in this election cycle – a lot more than this time in the election seasons of 2008, 2006 and 2004.
More than two dozen “super PACs” pour cash into elections
Bloomberg News has counted 25 “super political action committees” that are flooding this year’s campaigns with cash. Their growth was spurred by the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling.
Iowa group sues over new state campaign finance law
The Iowa Right to Life Committee, an anti-abortion organization, has gone to court to challenge a new state law that calls for details of corporate expenditures for elections to be made public. Iowa passed the disclosure law in response to the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. The group says the new law is unconstitutional and is asking for an injunction to put the law on hold.
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