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Campaign Funding

May 5, 1999
Information about politicians who accept money from pro-gun organizations (letter, May 3) is available from Project Vote Smart at or (888) 868-3762. PVS has lots of information, including the source of all campaign funding, as well as how our elected officials have voted and how they are rated by a wide range of special-interest groups. SUSAN GUILFORD Orange
April 23, 2014 | By Patrick McGreevy
State senators and their aides spent Wednesday discussing ethics, but it wasn't all dry reading from handbooks. Ethics experts came up with several “hypotheticals for discussion.” They include: "Senator publishes Top 10 items on his personal bucket list on Facebook.  Lobbyist Employer's government affairs representative who is a FB friend of the Senator sees the Facebook posting and posts the following FB message, 'We can help you achieve...
September 21, 2013 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - In what may be Act 2 in the decline and fall of campaign funding laws, the Supreme Court appears poised to lift the lid on the total amount the wealthy can give directly to all candidates and political parties. Increasingly, the money that funds election races for Congress and the presidency comes from a small sliver of the very rich, what the Sunlight Foundation called the "elite class that serves as gatekeepers of public office in the United States. " The nonpartisan group has tracked how a growing share of election money comes from the top 1% of the wealthiest Americans.
April 2, 2014 | By David G. Savage and David Lauter
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court struck another major blow against long-standing restrictions on campaign money Wednesday, freeing wealthy donors to each give a total of $3.6 million this year to the slate of candidates running for Congress. Rejecting the restriction as a violation of free speech, the 5-4 ruling struck down a Watergate-era limit that Congress wrote to prevent a single donor from writing a large check to buy influence on Capitol Hill. It was the latest sign that the court's conservative majority intends to continue dismantling funding limits created over the last four decades.
March 8, 2007
Re "Money for nothing," editorial, March 5 The Times asserts that Congress should wait until after the 2008 election before fixing the presidential public funding system. But we can safely predict what will happen in 2008 if the general election candidates go without public funding -- they will spend much of their time at $2,300-a-plate fundraisers, in a race for cash that will eclipse the debate over the real issues. We shouldn't wait to fix the system for 2012. The 2008 election is shaping up as a competitive contest, and no one can confidently predict the winner.
March 20, 2014 | By Catherine Saillant
In the first major debate of the campaign, four of the candidates vying to replace Zev Yaroslavsky on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors faced off Thursday in a debate that focused mostly on fundraising. It was an opportunity for key contenders to begin shaping their messages and distinguishing themselves from rivals before an audience on the UCLA campus. And they didn't hold back. The candidates discussed how best to work with a new sheriff to fix the county's crowded jails and how they plan to appeal to voters in the San Fernando Valley, where half the votes lie. But the most heated exchange came as they discussed the effect of money in the campaign, and how dollars are being raised.
February 3, 2014 | By Paul Pringle and Abby Sewell
The FBI spoke with former U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis about her role in a 2012 fundraiser for President Obama, but the candidate for Los Angeles County supervisor believes she did nothing wrong and doesn't know if the inquiry is continuing, her campaign consultant said Monday. Steve Barkan, the campaign advisor, said in a statement that Solis had a "cordial" meeting with the FBI in November 2012 - about eight months after the fundraiser at the La Fonda supper club in Los Angeles.
January 22, 2014 | By Tony Perry
SAN DIEGO - Just as this city is recovering from the scandal that drove Bob Filner from the mayor's office, along comes another political firestorm. But instead of sexual harassment, it involves allegations of illegal contributions flowing into mayoral campaigns. A retired San Diego police officer, the owner of a Washington, D.C.-based election services business and another man have been charged with conspiring to funnel more than $500,000 in illegal contributions from an unidentified Mexican businessman into recent political campaigns.
November 6, 2013 | George Skelton, Capitol Journal
SACRAMENTO - In politics, there's sleaze that can send a slimeball to prison. There also is legal bribery. Lots of it. "Campaign contributions provide a fig leaf for legalized bribery," says campaign finance expert Robert Stern, who helped write California's political reform act four decades ago. "Ninety percent of campaign money comes from people who want something from government. And often they get it. Nobody gives campaign money to incumbents who have no real [reelection]
November 4, 2013 | By Patrick McGreevy
SACRAMENTO - California's ethics agency has fined a former state Senate majority leader $60,000 for campaign violations that include spending $26,541 in political funds on personal expenses, buying furniture, concert tickets, ski trips to Utah, expensive dinners, fireworks, a satellite radio subscription and gas for his car. Former Sen. Dean Florez, a Democrat who represented a San Joaquin Valley district until 2010, agreed to the fines, submitting a...
October 8, 2013 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - Over the last seven years, a series of decisions by the Supreme Court has opened the way for hundreds of millions of additional dollars to flow into the nation's political campaign system. On Tuesday, the justices appeared sharply divided over whether to allow the wealthy to contribute even more by lifting restrictions on the amounts they can give directly to candidates. At times, the argument turned into a debate among the justices over the relationship between money and the political process.
October 6, 2013 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court term that opens Monday gives the court's conservative bloc a clear opportunity to shift the law to the right on touchstone social issues such as abortion, contraception and religion, as well as the political controversy over campaign funding. If the justices on the right agree among themselves, they could free wealthy donors to give far more to candidates and parties and clear the way for exclusively Christian prayers at local government events. In other cases due to be heard this fall, the justices are likely to uphold state bans on college affirmative action and block most housing bias claims that allege an unfair impact on blacks and Latinos.
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