March 21, 2005

Campaign Finance Reform

"If Congress thought this was a Pew effort, it'd be worthless..."
So confides Sean Treglia, of Pew Charitable Trusts, as part of a stunning admission that eight liberal groups bankrolled and orchestrated the supposed grassroots effort behind McCain-Feingold.

John Fund details the story (Although Chris Muir hit it pretty succinctly in a cartoon).

The efforts of Pew and the other liberal foundations, which include George Soros's Open Society Institute and the Carnegie Corp., were aided by the news media's complicity. The American Prospect, a liberal magazine, put out a special issue on campaign finance reform in 2000 that was paid for by a $132,000 Carnegie grant--a fact the magazine failed to disclose.

National Public Radio openly accepted $1.2 million from liberal foundations to provide such items as "coverage of financial influence in political decision-making." Its campaign finance reporter, Peter Overby, is a former editor of the magazine put out by Common Cause, a major supporter of McCain-Feingold. No one suggests there was direct collusion between NPR and campaign finance lobbies. With the money and personnel available to NPR, there didn't need to be. Sympathetic stories on the need for campaign finance reform flowed naturally.

So, much of the good press was bought. And, one suspects, the rest flowed very naturally as this ill bill would empower media sources over real grass roots organizations.

The real chance to kill this bad law was missed by SCOTUS, when they amazingly failed to shrike it down. Porn is protected, political speech can be legislated. I think the bill might get a good challenge as they try to use it on bloggers but I am not optimistic about reversing this unconstitutional mélange.

One possible, positive outcome would be to have this take the bloom off a McCain '08 run once and for all. I laud his patriotism and marvel at his courage but tire of his CFR sanctimony. I think exposing him as a Pew lapdog should be all the opposition research that a primary opponent would need.

Politics Posted by John Kranz at March 21, 2005 7:13 PM

WSJ discusses the application of the law to bloggers today:
Something's really got to be done about our political process if the people who created and passed McCain-Feingold are really considered the best and brightest among us.

Posted by: johngalt at March 23, 2005 2:58 PM | What do you think? [1]