Clean and Fair Elections

Clean & Fair Elections Update - Election Reform: What's Moving in 2009

Only a month into most legislative sessions, and facing devastating budget crises, election bills are just starting to move around the country. Here are the notable legislative actions so far.

RNC Presses Lawsuit to Strike Limits on Soft Money Spent in States

The Republican National Committee has filed a lawsuit against the Federal Elections Commission, hoping to prevent restrictions on donations to political parties designated for spending on state-level campaign work and congressional redistricting, among other things.  The RNC has teamed up with James Bopp, the country's top crusader against campaign finance regulations, who has had substantial success of late.  He argued the Wisconsin Right to Life case that eviscerated McCain-Feingold's ban on corporate and union spending on advertisements in federal elections.  (He is also himself a member of the RNC and counsel to the rightwing, socially conservative group Focus on the Family).  Previously his mission has been to tear down all restrictions on independent groups, but in this case Bopp is expanding his goals to include the political parties themselves.  And while new Democratic National Committee Counsel Bob Bauer, late of the Obama campaign and an election law scholar in his own right, thinks the law and the constitution are on their side, the Robert's Supreme Court is clearly on a path toward dismantling the campaign finance regime we have now.