The American people were the losers when the U.S. Senate failed to pass legislation that would have forced donors of groups that bankroll most election ads to be revealed. But Democrats, led by New York Senator Charles Schumer, have pledged to keep trying to pass this needed bill. The DISLCOSE Act, which was dealt the same fate in the Senate in 2010, failed to overcome a key procedural vote on partisan lines. The vote on the bill was 51-44. With 60 votes being needed to force a vote on the bill, it fell nine votes short.
Four Republicans and one Democrat did not vote on the bill, which would require corporate interest groups, unions and nonprofits that spend $10,000 or more during an election cycle to disclose donors who give $10,000 or more. The new version of the bill, sponsored by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) would have no longer required sponsors of electioneering ads to have a disclaimer at the end and would have pushed the effective date to 2013.
Since we are in an election year though, I can understand why this bill doesn’t have broad, bipartisan support even though the American people favor openness and full disclosure of political donations. That is according to all polling results that I have seen. Unfortunately, Republicans stood with the big banks, drug companies, oil companies, and other powerful special interests that virtually control what happens in Congress. Those groups certainly don’t need more clout in Washington. Outside spending groups, including super PACS, party committees and groups such as corporations and unions have – at press time – spent well over $175 million so far during this election cycle. This is according to the Center for Responsive Politics. A large portion of that money goes toward sponsoring election ads.
It has become evident that a handful of billionaires willing to contribute huge sums – in the nine figures – are trying to sway what may well be a very close presidential election. It’s believed that roughly 60% or more of these outside dollars are coming from about 15 individuals. Hopefully, the DISCLOSURE Act, which is so badly needed, will have a chance to pass next year. If you agree let your U.S. Senators know and ask them to support this legislation.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.