Elections have consequences – and here’s one, now.
Thursday, the House of Representatives approved the bill 219-206, with 36 Democrats and 170 Republicans in opposition to the measure, which was written by Rep. Chris Van Hollen, the Maryland Democrat who heads the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee this year, and New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, who led the Senate Democrats’ campaign panel in 2008.
The bill is full of draconian restrictions on individual political speech expressed via corporations, but gives privileged status to the Democrats’ union masters. A provision pushed by Pennsylvania Democrat Rep. Bob Brady, for example, allows unions to transfer unlimited funds among affiliated groups to pay for political ads with no disclosure whatever. That makes campaign funding more transparent?
Believe me, it gets better and better – for given values of ‘better’ – so read the whole thing. Quite a few special-interest exemptions in there, mostly involving unions but also (and notably not mentioned in the Examiner article) the NRA, the Sierra Club, and AARP*. About the only good thing that you can say about this bill is that it’s going to be extremely hard to find a Republican Senator dumb enough to sign off on it. And before you say “John McCain,” he’s already come out against it:
But McCain says he will be no part of advancing a bill that requires more disclosure of corporations than it does of labor unions. “It’s no surprise that Democrats craft a bill that favors their supporters,” he said, after the House vote.
Amazing what a contested primary will do to focus a man’s mind, huh?
*Labor unions, the Sierra Club, AARP… and the National Rifle Association. Six months ago, I would have started singing “One Of These Things (Is Not Like The Others)” in response to a list like that.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.