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Media Contact: David Vance, National Media Strategist, 240-605-8600 or dvance@commoncause.org

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Money & Influence 03.21.2019

Federal Court Strikes Down Ban on Unauthorized Committees Using Candidate Names in Website Addresses

Today’s District Court ruling is disappointing as it will embolden to scam PACs to trade on the names of candidates to raise money for their own ends from unknowing citizens. The core requirements of the ban though are in the statute itself and are still enforceable. The Federal Election Commission (FEC) can and should still be enforcing the ban—and opening a rulemaking to establish new disclaimer requirements for non-candidate websites that use a candidate’s name in the URL. The court itself cited such new disclaimer requirements as an appropriate means of protecting donors from being preyed upon by scam PACs.

Money & Influence 03.18.2019

DOJ & FEC Complaints Filed for Apparent “Straw Donor” Contributions to Trump Campaign

Today, Common Cause filed complaints with the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Election Commission (FEC) alleging reason to believe that a Florida businesswoman violated campaign finance laws by enlisting and reimbursing “straw donors” tens of thousands of dollars in political contributions related to the reelection efforts of Donald Trump.

House Passes Sweeping Pro-Democracy Reforms in the Face of Stiff K Street Opposition

Score one for the people. The House passed the For the People Act in the face of stiff opposition from K Street’s corporate lobbyists and special interests. The legislation truly is for the people, bundling together a comprehensive set of long-overdue democracy reforms at a time when democratic norms are under siege in our nation. Many of the reforms included in H.R. 1 are tested reforms that are working at the state and local level with bipartisan support to restore the rule of law, empower the voices of all Americans, curb abusive partisan gerrymandering, and strengthen the right to vote for every eligible American.

Voting & Elections 03.5.2019

Common Cause Urges U.S. House Members to Support the For the People Act (H.R. 1)

Today, Common Cause urged every member of the U.S. House of Representatives to vote “yes” on the For the People Act (H.R. 1) when it goes to a floor vote on Friday. The letter notes that Common Cause plans to key-vote final passage of H.R. 1, as well as the motion-to-recommit (MTR), in our Democracy Scorecard, which we send to our 1.2 million members. The bill contains the most comprehensive set of democracy reforms to be introduced in Congress since the post-Watergate reforms were passed in the 1970s. The letter emphasizes that our democracy faces a crisis not seen since the Watergate era.

Roger Stone Indictment Implicates Trump Campaign in Campaign Finance Violations Related to WikiLeaks Documents Stolen by Russian Intelligence Officials

Roger Stone’s indictment implicates the Trump campaign in campaign finance violations during the 2016 election related to WikiLeaks documents provided by Russian Intelligence officials. The indictment makes clear that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation has uncovered evidence that a “senior Trump campaign official was directed” by someone else within the campaign, perhaps Donald Trump himself, to contact Stone and request that Stone obtain “damaging information” on Clinton from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who was in possession DNC emails that had been hacked by Russian intelligence officers.

Money & Influence 01.10.2019

New “Testing the Waters” Report Examines How Presidential Candidates Ignore Campaign Finance Laws & Regulators Let Them

Today, Common Cause released a new report on the many ways presidential candidates bend and break campaign finance laws as they barnstorm early primary states, fundraise, evade contributions limits, and build their campaign teams while denying they are running for office. “‘Testing the Waters’ or Diving Right In?” is part of Common Cause’s 2020 Candidate Watch project through which the organization will watchdog candidate compliance with and government enforcement of campaign finance laws during the current election cycle.

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