Senate Democrats mustered 57 votes to move the House-passed Disclose Act on the path from bill to law, and could have improved that to 59, but it wasn’t enough to overcome a solid wall of Republican opposition. Although sponsor Chuck Schumer (D-NY) vowed to keep pushing forward, the block is expected to eliminate any chance for legislation that could affect this year’s vote.
The legislation has been put forward as an antidote to the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling, which potentially uncorks untold amounts of corporate and union political spending, particularly in direct support or opposition to a particular candidate.
Among the provisions in the legislation were “stand by your ad” requirements and reporting clauses detailing where the money behind a particular ad came from.
Schumer is planning to bring the matter up again after recess, and says he’s open to changes that may garner the minimal Republican support needed to see the measure to the Senate floor. But even if it were passed immediately on the Senate’s return to business, there would be virtually no chance of putting it in place for this year’s midterm election battle. The Senate returns from summer recess 9/13/10.
RBR-TVBR observation: Although we’ve seen other opinions, most seem to believe that corporate spending unleashed by the Supreme Court in the Citizens United case will be a factor this Fall.