Daily Media Links 12/7: Free speech is a right, not a political weapon, FEC to Eye Super PAC’s Hiring of Trump Campaign Workers, and more…

In the News Washington Examiner: Trump will get great advice on the First Amendment By David Keating The flag is a symbol of our nation, the best in the world, and our freedoms. But burning it is also free speech… While the First Amendment is always under assault, two key members of the incoming Trump […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

Self-Styled Campaign Finance “Reformers” Jump the Shark

Self-Styled Campaign Finance “Reformers” Jump the Shark Ten Stunts, Antics, and Exploits That Show Many Anti-Free Speech Activists Have Lost It By Luke Wachob Introduction What do activists do when the government isn’t prioritizing their cause? What does the head of a federal agency do when she doesn’t get her way? What do “good government” […]

Filed Under: Amending Press Release/In the News/Blog, Amending the Constitution, Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Enforcement, Faulty Assumptions, FEC, First Amendment, Issues, Money in Politics, Research, Super PACs, Super PACs, "John Doe", Ann Ravel, Democracy Spring, Doug Hughes, ellen weintraub, federal election commission, Gyrocopter, Larry Lessig, Mayday PAC, Udall Amendment, Zephyr Teachout, Enforcement, Faulty Assumptions, First Amendment, Enforcement, Faulty Assumptions, First Amendment, Super PACs, Wisconsin

“Drain the Swamp” Means Different Things for Trump Supporters and Speech Regulation Supporters

As the Trump Administration begins to take shape, the media and pro-regulation voices have honed in on the President-elect’s prospective cabinet and its fidelity towards his campaign pledge to “drain the swamp.” According to academics, self-styled campaign finance “reform” groups, and even current lawmakers, Trump is not only failing to drain the swamp, but has […]

Filed Under: Blog, Drain the Swamp, Trump Administration

Daily Media Links 12/6: The Future of Free Speech on Social Media Looks Grim, New pro-Trump group takes form, with Kellyanne Conway possibly at the helm, and more…

CCP Steyer’s Plan to Challenge Trump is Healthy for Free Speech Environment By Alex Baiocco Independent of how you feel about Steyer’s preferred environmental policies, he deserves recognition for deciding that the way to combat activity he doesn’t like is to speak out and engage the public. What makes Steyer particularly worthy of acknowledgment is […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

Steyer’s Plan to Challenge Trump is Healthy for Free Speech Environment

In response to Donald Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton on Election Day, environmental activist and Democratic donor Tom Steyer has promised to continue to spend his vast wealth to combat the President-elect’s energy agenda, which he predicts will threaten his own environmental protection agenda. According to an interview with Reuters, Steyer is willing to spend […]

Filed Under: Blog, AGs United for Clean Power, climate change, Donald Trump, Eric Schneiderman, ExxonMobil, Tom Steyer, U.S. Virgin Islands, Massachusetts, New York

Daily Media Links 12/5: A response to the pleas to shut up Trump, FEC Asks Congress for Authority to Battle Shady PACs, and more…

Event Cato Institute: #CatoDigital – Free Speech in the Age of Trump Featuring Flemming Rose, Recipient, The 2016 Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty; adjunct scholar, Cato Institute; and author of The Tyranny of Silence; Nick Gillespie, Editor-in-Chief, Reason.com and Reason TV (@nickgillespie); moderated by Kat Murti, Senior Digital Outreach Manager, Cato Institute (@KatMurti)… On […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

More Soft Money Hard Law: Are There Genuine Issue Ads or Just “Sheep’s Wool”? (In the News)

By Bob Bauer
The Independence Institute, a 501(c)(3) organization, has pressed on this issue with a challenge to the application of the reporting rules to an ad lacking either express advocacy or its functional equivalent-i.e. a “genuine issue ad.” The ad named two Senators, one running for election, in appealing for support of pending legislation on criminal justice reform. A three-judge district court last month rejected the claim that the ad was constitutionally protected. The Court relied on the language of Citizens United. It appeared satisfied that even in the case of a genuine issue ad, a reference to a candidate was sufficient to trigger the electioneering communication disclosure requirements. Independence Institute v. Federal Election Commission, No. 14-cv-1500, 2016 WL656396 (D.D.C. November 3, 2016)…
For tax-exempt and other progressive issue organizations, the case is a significant one with implications of its own for the coming debate over “Trumpism” and the congressional majority’s plan to implement it. In the next election season, much of the discussion will center on the stand members of Congress (and other candidates) have taken, or would propose to take,on elements of this program. Under this decision, issue ads directed to this question would be regulated “electioneering communications.”

Filed Under: In the News, In the News Our Cases

Forbes: Thomas More Law Center Victory Over California AG – Big Win For Free Speech Or Dark Money? (In the News)

By Peter J. Reilly
The Thomas More Law Center is very concerned about donor confidentiality and is quite pleased about its recent win in the Ninth Circuit where it was opposing the California Attorney General. The argument was over whether TMLC should be required to provide the AG with the Schedule B of IRS Form 990 that discloses information about donors who have given $5,000 or more in a year…
TMLC had a victory, but hardly a sweeping one. They won’t have to turn their Schedule B over to the California AG, but almost every other charity that wants to raise money in California still does. Stephen Yosifon of Perlman+Perlman noted in the EO Tax Journal…
“For every other organization registering in California, Schedule B must still be submitted, as determined in Center for Competitive Politics v. Harris, 784 F.3d 1307 (9th Cir. 2015), cert denied.”…
In order to get this exemption, TMLC had to make a strong showing that their donors might be subject to harassment. They managed that…
“It also satisfies the requirement of Center for Competitive Politics that an organization show “a reasonable probability” that the disclosure of TMLC’s donors would subject them to threats or harassment.”

Filed Under: In the News, In the News Our Cases

Daily Media Links 12/2: Cruz and Meadows Introduce Bill to Eliminate Super PACs… The Constitutional Way, Tired Dem donors feel like their money got burned, and more…

In the News More Soft Money Hard Law: Are There Genuine Issue Ads or Just “Sheep’s Wool”? By Bob Bauer The Independence Institute, a 501(c)(3) organization, has pressed on this issue with a challenge to the application of the reporting rules to an ad lacking either express advocacy or its functional equivalent-i.e. a “genuine issue ad.” […]

Filed Under: Daily Media Links

Free Speech Under Fire: The Future of the First Amendment

In a set of remarks preceded by Brooklyn Law School President and Joseph Crea Dean Nicholas W. Allard, famed First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams muses on the recent and founding history of First Amendment law. Abrams is a longtime partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindel and was counsel on well-known First Amendment cases like the Pentagon […]

Filed Under: First Amendment, Jurisprudence & Litigation, Research, Antonin Scalia, Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce, Bill of Rights, Brown v. EMA, corruption, Floyd Abrams, Founding Fathers, Hill v. Colorado, Nicholas W. Allard, Samuel Alito, Stephen Breyer, First Amendment, Jurisprudence & Litigation, First Amendment, Jurisprudence & Litigation

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