Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) have teamed up to introduce the “Follow the Money Act of 2013,” which will hold independent political advertisers to the same kind of disclosure rules candidates are expected to follow.
The bill is designed to “address the influx of anonymous federal election spending,” and would require that funding sources be disclosed “in a manner consistent to that applied to federal candidates.”
Wyden stated, “These reforms reflect the belief that where there’s significant campaign spending, everyone has to play by the same rules and that voters deserve to know where the money is coming from and where it’s going. This will bring an end to the most flagrant abuses that have made a mockery of campaign finance and tax law.”
Added Murkowski, “Americans expect accountability and transparency from their candidates, and those deciding to influence elections should be held to the same standard. A majority of Republicans, Democrats and Independents were concerned over the role of big money and secret donors in the last election, proving that this is not a partisan issue, this is an issue about having the best-informed voters possible.”
In a release, the duo detailed some of the specifics of the bill:
* Directing the FEC to establish a real-time reporting system for contributions not later than January 1, 2015 so that the public can “Follow the Money” going into both candidate campaigns and independent spending in real time rather than wait for quarterly reports;
* Expanding existing “Stand By Your Ad” requirements currently applied to candidates to cover independent actors;
* Increasing the threshold level at which candidates and political committees must disclose contributions on their Federal Election Commission (FEC) reports from $200 to $1,000.
RBR-TVBR observation: OK, a show of hands. How many of you think this has the slightest chance of passing? Nobody? That’s what we figured.
Even if by some miracle this made it through both the Senate and the House, the current Supreme Court has already shown it will not stand by and allow a bill such as this to exist.