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Money & Influence 10.4.2017

Voters deserve to know who’s bankrolling shadowy political campaigns

A typical political ad for a ballot measure in California might include something like this: "Paid for by Yes on Proposition 99 — Good Jobs and Safe Streets, with major funding by People for Good Jobs and Safe Streets." This meets the legal requirement of disclosure under current rules, but it doesn't give voters any help at all identifying the real people, organizations and industries propping up this fictional initiative. In fact, it may even be misleading. And in this post-Citizens United world, where campaign spending has soared, clear disclosure of who is funding measures and candidates is more important than ever.

Money & Influence 08.30.2017

Campaign-Finance ‘Dark Money’ Bill Clears Key California Senate Committee

“This is the most important campaign-finance law before the Legislature this year,” Nicolas Heidorn of the citizens’ watchdog group California Common Cause said. “When you know who the messenger is you can more effectively evaluate the message. By removing the veil of anonymity, we force groups to put their brand next to their words, which will help nudge our politics slowly towards the ideals of an open legislature. This is a ‘We the People’ issue.”

Money & Influence 06.12.2017

Some Montebello council members raise thousands of dollars from city contractors in non-election year

Kathay Feng, executive director for California Common Cause, criticized the practice of taking money from city contractors and called it unusual for fund-raising to happen in a small city so far removed from an election.

Money & Influence 01.16.2017

L.A. Councilman Mike Bonin proposes full public funding for city campaigns

Councilman Mike Bonin said he wants voters to consider a proposal next year that would allow candidates to rely on taxpayer money rather than private contributions to fund their campaigns.

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