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-By Elspeth Reeve
February 20, 2013- The massive amount of outside political spending unleashed by Citizens United did not, as feared, make it easier for rich people to buy an election. Instead, it showed that rich people are pretty dumb about politics. Take the billionaire businessmen Charles and David Koch who are spending their 2013 figuring out why they the money they spent in 2012 was such a waste. They have already fired most of their 100 staffers at Americans for Prosperity, and they're now conducting an audit.
-By Amanda Marcotte
February 20, 2013- Thanks to Donkeylicious for bringing this to my attention. Michael Walsh of National Review Online called for the termination of women’s right to vote last week:
Nevertheless, you’re on to something I’ve been advocating for years now. And that is the repeal of all four of the so-called “Progressive Era” amendments, including the 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th, which were passed between 1911 and 1920.
-By Bernie Becker
February 19, 2013- A former Democratic congressional candidate and a government watchdog are suing the IRS, claiming the agency has allowed political groups to flout campaign finance laws.
In their lawsuit, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) and David Gill, who lost a razor-thin election in 2012, say that the failure of the IRS to keep so-called 501(c)(4) groups out of politics has allowed a flood of anonymous money into the political process.
“Disgracefully, the IRS has sat on its hands for the last two election cycles while 501(c)(4) groups have been formed expressly to run negative attack ads funded by anonymous donors,” Melanie Sloan, CREW’s executive director, said in a statement.
“When called out, the IRS has said only that it is ‘aware’ of the public’s concern. Now the IRS can explain its deplorable inaction in federal court.”
-By Brendan Fischer
February 20, 2013- The U.S. Supreme Court could open the door to even more money in politics than it did in the disastrous 2010 decision Citizens United v FEC as it considers a new case challenging limits on how much wealthy donors can give directly to federal candidates and political parties. If the court sides with the challengers in McCutcheon v FEC, political power and influence in America would be further concentrated in the hands of just a few wealthy donors.
Citizens United Flawed in Light of 2012 Elections, but McCutcheon Might Be Worse
The Citizens United decision was premised on the notion that expenditures made "independently" of candidates are less likely to have a corruptive influence than direct contributions to candidates and parties.
Think Progress: The Supreme Court Will Hear A Republican Party Lawsuit To Make Citizens United Even Worse
-By Ian Millhiser
February 19, 2013- The Supreme Court’s election-buying decision in Citizens United v. FEC enabled wealthy corporations to spend unlimited money to change the course of American elections, and a subsequent lower court decision gave the green light to super PACs funded by unlimited donations from millionaires, billionaires and corporations. Today, the Supreme Court announced it would hear another case — brought by none other than the Republican National Committee — that would go even further towards transforming American democracy into the Wild West.
-By Bill Sizemore
February 13, 2013- A requirement that all Virginia voters present photo identification at the polls moved a step closer to passage today.
State Sen. Mark Obenshain’s bill (SB1256) was endorsed by a House subcommittee, 5-1, and now advances to the full Appropriations Committee.
The measure would invalidate several forms of ID currently accepted at the polls, including voter identification cards issued by the State Board of Elections, which contain no photo. The state spent $2 million last year mailing new cards to all registered voters and educating Virginians about changes the 2012 General Assembly made to voting requirements.
February 13, 2013- President Barack Obama addressed the need for voting rights protection in Tuesday's State of the Union speech.
Listening closely was U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), who joined HuffPost Live on Wednesday to discuss her own proposed voter reform legislation. Called the LINE Act, Boxer's election reform bill would require new national standards relating to the minimum number of voting machines, election workers, and other election resources to be in place by the end of 2013.
-By Ryan J. Reilly
February 12, 2013- President Barack Obama will announce a bipartisan presidential voting commission to focus on improving the Election Day experience, The Huffington Post has learned from two sources outside the White House with knowledge of the plans.
The commission is one of a number of efforts the Obama administration is making to address the problems that plagued voting on Election Day 2012. The commission, which will focus specifically on Election Day issues and not broader voting reform, will likely be co-chaired by one Republican and one Democratic lawyer, according to one of the sources.