Daily Media Links 1/14: State campaign finance laws to get day in court, Medical organizations invoke Newtown to request more funding from Obama, and more…

In the News
US News: Reform Could Resurrect FEC’s Ability to Oversee Campaigns  
By Seth Cline
“I think the White House will probably at least try to fill out that seat, it’s conceivable that they could do a big grab deal where they would replace all six commissioners at one time,” says Brad Smith, a former FEC commissioner and the chairman of the Center for Competitive Politics.  
Independent Groups
Politico: Obama campaign to hold ‘Legacy Conference’ 
By Byron Tau
CNN reported Wednesday that senior Obama campaign aides were considering turning the campaign organization into a 501(c)(4) nonprofit social welfare organization or even a super PAC — despite Obama’s stated opposition to so-called dark-money groups like tax-exempt nonprofits or independent-expenditure committees.  

Corporate Governance 

NY Times: New York’s Pension Muscle 
When the United States Supreme Court issued its flawed 2010 decision in the Citizens United case, unleashing millions of dollars in corporate spending on political campaigns, there seemed to be one small prescription for relief. Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing for the majority, noted that prompt disclosure of political expenditures would allow stockholders and citizens to hold corporations accountable. Shareholders, he said, could determine whether the corporation’s financing of campaigns “advances the corporation’s interest in making profits.” 
The Nation: Secret Money Lobbyists Fight SEC Disclosure Rule 
By Lee Fang
Lobbyists, especially those guiding large amounts of undisclosed corporate cash into the election, are not pleased with the SEC proposal. Trade groups that lobby for Walmart, Chevron and major Fortune 100 companies are registering their disapproval on the SEC’s open comment website.  
Fortune: What’s behind all the corporate secrecy over political spending? 
By Eleanor Bloxham, CEO of The Value Alliance
FORTUNE — While millions of unemployed struggle to keep hope, corporations shelled out millions on election attack ads last year. Individual companies are still not fessing up on how their millions were spent. What do they have to hide? 

Candidates, Politicians and Parties

LA Times (LTE): Letters: Your president, brought to you by…. 
To win reelection,  Obama had to counter his well-heeled opposition’s newly enhanced monetary firepower. He therefore inexorably incurred many political debts,  including inauguration perks for corporate donors.  
Huffington Post: Campaign Finance Reform In Congress Moves Forward With Little Hope For Passage 
By Paul Blumenthal
In the House, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has combined those three pieces with the issue of voter empowerment and put Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.) in charge of a task force to shape the legislation for the Democratic caucus. The task force is constructed around the acronym DARE, which stands for disclose, amend, reform and empower.  

Lobbying and Ethics

Daily Caller: Medical organizations invoke Newtown to request more funding from Obama   
By Patrick Howley
Fifty-two medical organizations — including the American Medical Association, which contributed more than $16,000 to President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign — sent a letter to the White House on Tuesday invoking the Newtown, Conn. school shooting tragedy to request increased federal and state funding for medical programs, such as psychiatric care and an educational campaign that “reduces the stigma of seeking mental health services.”  
State and Local
Mississippi –– Daily Journal: UPDATE: State campaign finance laws to get day in court 
Just days before the statewide election, Aycock denied their immediate motion to go around the law, which requires registration by any person or group making contributions or spending more than $200 total in a calendar year to influence voters.
New York –– AP: Cuomo pushes NY campaign finance reform _ again 
ALBANY, N.Y. — Gov. Andrew Cuomo is making a priority of campaign finance reform just as he and much of Albany have bulked up with campaign fundraisers that have brought in millions of dollars in donations.  

The Center for Competitive Politics is now the Institute for Free Speech.