Election Law Center
Election Law Center

Reform zealots and IRS scandal weaken campaign contribution disclosure argument

Charles Krauthammer shows how reform community zealots and the IRS targeting of political opponents have weakened any good government argument for the full disclosure of political contributions.

In his lone dissent to the disclosure requirement in Citizens United, Justice Clarence Thomas argued that American citizens should not be subject “to death threats, ruined careers, damaged or defaced property, or pre-emptive and threatening warning letters as the price for engaging in core political speech, the primary object of First Amendment protection.” (Internal quote marks omitted.)

In fact, wariness of full disclosure goes back to 1958 when the Supreme Court ruled that the NAACP did not have to release its membership list to the state, understanding that such disclosure would surely subject its members to persecution. “This court has recognized the vital relationship between freedom to associate and privacy in one’s associations . . . particularly where a group espouses dissident beliefs.”

A different era, a different set of dissidents. But the naming of names, the listing of lists, goes on. The enforcers are at it again, this time armed with sortable Internet donor lists.

The ultimate victim here is full disclosure itself. If revealing your views opens you to the politics of personal destruction, then transparency, however valuable, must give way to the ultimate core political good, free expression.
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77% of Texans believe photo ID used to prevent voter fraud

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GOP Rep. Fleming: "No evidence of problem" to support new expansive Voting Rights Bill

So what evidence has there been of discrimination since the Shelby case:   The Hill reports that according to GOP Representative Fleming, none.
In terms of discrimination, someone being coerced not to vote or show up, I’m not aware of any evidence that’s a problem. I think photo ID is a much more pressing issue than these kind of questions,” Rep. John Fleming (R-La.) said.
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Disparate Impact: ACLU Expert Report vs. NC

The ACLU expert in North Carolina opines that changing early voting has a disparate racial impact. ... << MORE >>

"IRS coordinated Tea Party targeting with Justice Department, FEC and liberal political activists"

Tapscott at the Examiner:

"Lerner's mention of Americans for Campaign Reform is doubly interesting because it suggests the IRS scandal was a three-cornered effort by the Obama administration effort to suppress its Tea Party and conservative critics.

Americans for Campaign Reform is a 501(c)(3) education foundation. Note that IRS rules governing c3s bar partisan political activity far more rigorously than those covering c4s.

The group has received at least 41 contributions totaling $1.7 million in recent years from such groups as the Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, The New York Community Trust, Fidelity Investments Charitable Gift Fund and the Silicon Valley Community Foundation."

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Ignoring Republicans, Sensenbrenner worked closely with Holder Department of Justice in writing expansive voting rights bill

Link to story.  No evidence that Sensenbrenner worked closely with Republicans or voter integrity groups.  This explains a lot.
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"A New, More Sinister IRS Scandal"

"Yesterday was a significant day in the IRS abuse scandal. The scandal evolved from being about pesky delays in IRS exemption applications to a government conniving with outside interests to put political opponents in prison.

Emails obtained by Judicial Watch through the Freedom of Information Act reveal Lois Lerner cooking up plans with Justice Department officials to talk about ways to criminally charge conservative groups that are insufficiently quiet."

Full story at PJ Media.

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Why Sensenbrenner VRAA Is in Trouble: Windshift

Amendments to the Voting Rights Act are in big trouble in Congress. Why?  Because of a windshift over the last 5 years. The wind shifted because the Voting Section abused and misused power. It dropped cases it shouldn't have dropped. It brought cases it shouldn't have brought. It didn't enforce parts of the law it didn't like. This cherry picking and abuse means that those in the House that voted for the 2006 law won't vote to pass it again. One example of many from the Hill:

Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-Texas) voted for the law’s reauthorization in 2006, but says he won’t again.

“Back at home, my constituency has shifted significantly and does not believe Texas should be singled out. They believe elections are being done properly. They believe redistricting is being done properly. They don’t have the same concerns they did eight or nine years ago when I voted for it,” he said.

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A Refresher on the Speech Regulator's Role in IRS Scandal

Today's revelation that the Speech Regulators in academia and nonprofit groups were pressing the government to criminally prosecute conservatives groups in order to scare other conservative groups merits a refresher on the architecture of the IRS scandal.  This isn't about the IRS delaying an exemption determination.  This is about speech regulators in academia and in non profits, always the smartest minds in the room, urging the government to attack political opponents.

"President Obama’s Bogus Voting Rights Claims"

"Last Friday, in a speech at Al Sharpton’s National Action Network conference, President Obama proudly announced that the Justice Department had taken on more than 100 voting rights cases since 2009. The problem with that claim is that, since 2009, the Justice Department has taken on only 39 voting rights cases —and as former Voting Section lawyer Christian Adams points out, only 13 were related to protecting minority voting rights. And, with respect to some of the cases in which the department has been involved, it lost spectacularly—such as its false claim that South Carolina’s voter ID law was discriminatory.

Perhaps President Obama misspoke when he overstated the number of voting rights cases by more than 60—or perhaps he was misinformed by his Attorney General, Eric Holder. In fact, the ever-criticized Bush administration had a much better enforcement record with much higher case numbers than the Obama administration, as was outlined in a report released by the Justice Department’s Inspector General in March 2013. President Obama also made no mention of his administration’s unjustified dismissal of the voter intimidation case against the New Black Panther Party—that would, after all, not fit the narrative he is trying to propagate. Regardless, President Obama’s exaggerated claims come as no surprise, especially given the setting of this particular speech."

The Foundry

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"Possible Judicial Bias in NC Voter ID Case"

"Remarks made by an associate justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court at a Democratic Party fund-raising dinner, as well as her membership in a private organization, raise serious questions about her possible bias against the state’s new voter ID law. Under applicable judicial ethics rules, she should remove herself from the controversial litigation challenging the law before it reaches the state Supreme Court.

On Saturday, March 22, North Carolina Supreme Court Associate Justice Cheri Beasley spoke at the Carteret County Jefferson Jackson Dinner. ...

At the Democratic Party dinner, according to the Carteret County News-Times, Justice Beasley said that “a lot of folks are confused about [voter ID] and the confusion is by design.”

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IRS Emails: Speech Regulator Larry Noble Wanted to Jail Conservative 501(c) Activists

Emails obtained by Judicial Watch contain IRS emails discussing efforts of Larry Noble and others to seek criminal prosecutions of conservative groups in order to make a statement and scare other conservative groups. PJ Media has the story.

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Two Texans accused of voter fraud in 2012 primary election

More “nonexistent” voter fraud, from the home of LBJ’s Box 13:


Two Jim Wells County men were arrested for alleged voter fraud after the Attorney General's office found they were not eligible to vote.”


The two were charged with illegally voting in Texas’ May 2012 Primary Election, “an election they knew they were not eligible to vote,” a second degree felony.

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"Democrat Party at War With Itself on Voter ID"

 Fox news covered at Mediate, and failing to cover Melowese Richardson. ... << MORE >>

Coming Soon: Blistering New Book on DOJ and Voting Section

On June 10, a blistering new book on the Justice Department and the shenanigans inside the DOJ Voting Section is released.  "Obama's Enforcer" by John Fund and Hans von Spakovsky will detail abuses of power at Holder's Justice Department.  It has disturbing stories from inside the Department about Justice Department staff both giving a pass to criminal election activity as well as naming the names of those inside the Civil Rights Division who engaged in criminal activity.  Amazon link here.

Texas Senator Cornyn: "Obama voter ID rhetoric is demagogic"

John Cornyn tweets that "the American ppl deserve better than demagogic rhetoric from POTUS on voter ID"

Definition of demagoguery: a political leader who tries to get support by making false claims and promises and using arguments based on emotion rather than reason.

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More on the Kelly File topic

More on my hit on the Kelly File regarding more IRS abuse at Town Hall.

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On With Megyn Kelly re Latest Washington DC Outrage

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Hume: AG "Crybaby"

“To those two men, race has been both a shield and a sword that they have used effectively to defend themselves and attack others,” Hume continued. “It is depressing at this stage in our national life, after all we’ve been through on this issue and given the overwhelming consensus of civil rights, that this stuff is still going on.”

Brit Hume commentary
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"For Attorney General Eric Holder, Justice is for Democrats only"

A veteran Justice Department lawyer says that Attorney General Eric Holder has politicized the department in a way he hadn’t seen before. In short, “Holder is the worst person to hold the position of attorney general since the disgraced John Mitchell.”

Now in his sixth year as attorney general, Holder has increasingly tilted the department in an ideological direction. It’s one thing to emphasize President Obama’s legal priorities. It’s quite another to decide not to enforce certain federal laws — such as the ban on marijuana — or urge state attorney generals to refuse to defend local laws on same-sex marriage.

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