The misnamed DISCLOSE Act is being fast tracked by the liberals in the Senate to silence those with an opposing view just before the 2010 mid-term elections. Make no mistake, if passed this legislation will suppress political speech!
The House version, H.R. 1575 has been passed and now Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has introduced his own bill (S. 3628) that is only slightly different than the House version.
The DISCLOSE Act has been written with special exceptions for favorite dem special interest groups and of course, unions.
The DISCLOSE Act is an unequivocal ban on free speech, masquerading as an exercise in accountability. The bill’s sponsors claim that these regulations are necessary after the Citizens United ruling, arguing that it allows corporations to prop up "shadow groups" through which money could be funneled to air independent advertisements.
The DISCLOSE Act (H.R. 1575; S. 3628), which is a misleading acronym for "Democracy Is Strengthened By Casting Light On Spending In Elections," will do the exact opposite of its intended purpose.
DISCLOSE is not designed to “cast light” on the election; it is designed to silence organizations by forcing them to expose their key donors prior to an election.
A more accurate acronym for DISCLOSE is this: “Democratic Incumbents Seeking to Contain Losses by Outlawing Speech in Elections.”
The legislation requires that an organization reveal the names of its top donors even if the donors had no direct involvement in the preparation of election materials, radio or TV ads. It requires that the names of the CEO, and top five funders be on each ad – more than once.
It also creates onerous reporting requirements to the Federal Election Commission (FEC), which will discourage many smaller groups from being involved in the election process.
If liberals can make the process ugly enough and the punishments severe enough, many groups will decide it’s not worth the hassle and risk.
The DISCLOSE Act is undoubtedly unconstitutional, but that doesn’t matter to liberals. If they can get it passed before the mid-term election, it will impact one of the most significant elections of our time. It only needs to be in force for one election cycle to give liberals the victory they want. If it’s struck down after the election, it doesn’t matter to them. They’ll have won.
The DISCLOSE Act is a direct response to the victory for free speech that Americans won in the Citizens United case that was decided by the Supreme Court. In that case, the Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional portions of the McCain-Feingold Act.
The Citizens United victory gave Americans back a portion of the free speech rights that had been taken away. The DISCLOSE Act is designed to subvert those free speech rights to benefit liberals running in 2010.
The DISCLOSE Act must not be passed!