See the comment in this Frontline report.
Tuesday morning, the Supreme Court “noted probable jurisdiction” in McCutcheon v. FEC. In other words, the Court will hear the case in its next Term, beginning in October. [I am serving as Of Counsel to McCutcheon, along with Stephen Hoersting and Dan Backer; Bopp Law Firm is lead counsel.] The announcement has of course garnered significant national attention; Election Law Blog has a compilation of some coverage here.
And the Wall Street Journal just released an editorial ($) presumably to run in tomorrow’s print edition.
See this link for 20121026 McCutcheon Plaintiffs jurisdictional statement
According to Lyle Denniston at SCOTUSblog here. The Court was scheduled to vote on whether to accept McCutcheon and another major campaign finance case, Danielczyk, today. McCutcheon is a challenge to federal aggregate contribution limits on a rare direct appeal from a three-judge district court. Danielczyk is a challenge to the ban on corporate direct contributions to candidates. I believe the Court will grant argument and briefing in McCutcheon, because the district court opinion is badly flawed and contrary to the Supreme Court’s rulings with respect to cognizable “corruption.” If the Court doesn’t take this case, the disposition will have precedential value because it’s on direct appeal, not a petition for cert, which is entirely discretionary. [Disclosure: I am part of the legal team serving as Of Counsel to plaintiff McCutcheon]
Prof. Rick Hasen predicts the Court will take McCutcheon but not Danielczyk. I’m not so sure they will refuse Danielczyk (and neither is he, as he states).
The TEC’s approval last week of Harris County Republicans’ text-to-donate request continues to garner national attention (see last week’s Roll Call story). Campaigns & Elections Magazine has a story today, including this:
“I think the most interesting use of text-to-donate will be in reaching large numbers of ‘unwired’ potential donors or those who aren’t effectively reachable by phone, mail, or email,” says Peter Pasi, executive VP of eMotive. “These voters—many of whom are African-Americans and Latinos who use their smartphone as their primary device to connect to the web—are also heavy users of SMS. It presents a unique opportunity for Republicans to generate new donors from—and start building real connections into this community.”
It’s time for Republicans and conservatives to reach out, and quit ceding technology advantages to liberals. This was the subject of another guest piece by Brian Donahue that ran in C&E today. Texas, full of cultural and economic conservatives, and minority communities that are natural Republicans, is fertile territory to start making technology work for us. This advisory opinion gets the ball rolling. But it’s only the first step.
Roll Call’s Abby Livingston reports (via “At the Races” blog) on the TEC’s approval of text contributions, including this quote:
“Texas is now the third state to approve text donations to statewide political campaigns,” Washington-based GOP digital strategist Peter Pasi said. “I think momentum is building to approve it in more [states] in advance of the 2014 elections. What’s significant is that this request came from a Republican group, thus dispelling the notion that text-to-donate is the exclusive realm of Democrats.”
Very interesting Texas Tribune summary of ethics reforms in Texas, beginning with the Sharpstown scandal in the ’70s.