Thursday, May 14, 2015

AZ Secretary of State battles Clean Elections Commission over dark money

Of course. It was just a matter of time until SoS Michele Reagan came out against dark money regulation. You might recall that Reagan was pushing for the voter suppression omnibus package at the end of the 2014 idiotive session. So it should not be surprising that she also buys into the money = speech nonsense. Here are summary clips from the Daily Star report this morning.

From the Secretary of State

An aide to Secretary of State Michele Reagan said a proposed commission rule designed to clarify when groups need to disclose donors amounts to a "power grab" of what she claims is her sole authority over regulating political committees.

The rule would make groups formed shortly before an election subject to financial disclosure, even if they claim to be educational, not political.

From the Clean Elections Commission

But Thomas Collins, the commission’s executive director, said voters clearly gave the five-member panel power over independent expenditures when they created the optional system of public financing of elections in 1998. He said the proposal simply clarifies — and does not override — what lawmakers approved earlier this year.

Collins declined to speculate why Reagan, elected last fall, is trying to throw roadblocks in the path of the regulation.

But he said her office has "adopted the same rhetorical position of others who don’t like Clean Elections." And that includes those who have opposed any crackdown on anonymous campaigns.

From the Scriber

OK, Sectretary Reagan. You don't like the proposed rules. For the sake of argument I'll even grant that you might have a constitutional reason for your stance (although I don't really believe that). But then what the hell else are you doing to get control of the wash of dark money that is a major threat to our democracy? It's easy to say no. When will you say yes and to what?

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