Friday, September 17, 2010
This is nothing to get complacent about, but over at Slate is an interesting story about a possible unexpected casualty in the recent Republican primary for Delaware's Senate seat: the DISCLOSE Act.
Tuesday's defeat of Delaware Rep. Mike Castle, in his Republican primary Senate race against Tea Party candidate Christine O'Donnell, spells doom for campaign finance bills in the next Congress. And the defeat of Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson, who lost to Rand Paul in Kentucky's Republican Senate primary in May, could jeopardize the chance for a desperately needed federal fix for how we run our elections.The last thing we need is to resurrect McCain-Feingold (which is the purpose of DISCLOSE), and we frankly ought to get rid of all federal funding of elections rather than working to "fix" something that is inherently broken.
Campaign finance reform has long been a signature issue for Castle: He was one of only two House Republicans to vote for the DISCLOSE Act, which, among other things, would require effective disclosure of the steady flow of corporate and union election spending unleashed by the Supreme Court's decision earlier this year in Citizens United v. FEC. If Castle had moved to the Senate, he likely would have led on this issue and provided cover for some of his more skittish Republican counterparts. Maybe he could have persuaded them to vote with him on a more modest disclosure bill than the current version of the DISCLOSE Act, to which Democrats had added new corporate spending limits. Castle also was an important supporter of a bill that aims to fix our broken system of public financing of presidential elections. [bold added]
Castle, incidentally, left the House to make his failed Senate run. Good riddance!
9-18-10: Corrected a typo.