Daily Media Links 10/31: K Street Lobbyists Hit the Campaign Trail in Virginia, Pay-to-Play Violations Carry Serious Penalties, and more…

Independent groups

NY Times: On Electoral Map, the Green Is Obscured 
If you are already dismayed at the spending and tactics that have characterized this election season, better stay away from Tuesday’s episode of “Frontline” on PBS. The piece, “Big Sky, Big Money,” looks at the shenanigans in Montana in the last four years, and the picture it paints of American electioneering certainly suggests a beast out of control. 

LA Times: Companies can now advise employees on how to vote — and they do
By Patt Morrison
Liberated from Federal Election Commission policies by the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, employers that were once barred from advising employees on how to vote are now free to start telling employees how they should vote, and including some “or else” warnings.  

Politico: The return of Bain Capital 
For the final days of the 2012 campaign, the Democratic groups pummeling Mitt Romney on television have returned to the weapon they started with last spring: Bain Capital.   

TPM Livewire: Dem Super PAC Launches Kitchen Sink ‘War On Women’ Online Ad Campaign  
American Bridge, the Democratic super PAC, is targeting Mitt Romney online with one of the harshest “war on women”-themed spots of the cycle. The 30 second web ad is running as pre-roll on ABC News videos starting Tuesday, amping up the Democratic messaging about women in the final week of the campaign.   

Candidates and parties

The Hill: Campaign to resume Wednesday 
By Justin Sink and Amie Parnes
Mitt Romney will resume campaigning Wednesday with a trio of events in Florida, while President Obama has canceled his election events to stay in Washington to monitor fallout from the storm the ravaged the East Coast. 

Lobbying and ethics

Roll Call: K Street Lobbyists Ready for Post-Sandy Disaster Aid Requests  
By Kate Ackley and Janie Lorber
While official Washington remained closed today, lobbyists said they were already working with clients from big financial institutions to small East Coast towns in storm-ravaged areas to assess what they might ask of the federal government when it reopens Wednesday. 

Roll Call: Pay-to-Play Violations Carry Serious Penalties  
By C. Simon Davidson
Q: I work for a company that makes sales to the government, and one of my roles is to ensure compliance with government contracting laws. In some recent company discussions about so-called pay-to-play laws, some of our business folks have argued that the cost of strict compliance might outweigh the benefit. They say the worst that can happen is being banned from future government contracts, and that this is a risk they are willing to take because government contracts are only a small part of our business. I know this is not a good compliance approach. Can you help me explain to them why? 

Roll Call: K Street Lobbyists Hit the Campaign Trail in Virginia  
By Kate Ackley
Democrats Maureen Walsh and Andy Rosenberg stood on the side of a street in a Northern Virginia subdivision where the hum of Interstate 66 lingered in the background. They studied a rudimentary map of the neighborhood and flipped through pages on a clipboard to brush up on their script. 

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