Advertisement
HomeCollectionsSoft Money
IN THE NEWS

Soft Money

FEATURED ARTICLES
NEWS
By Richard Reeves | December 21, 1999
WASHINGTON -- At the heart of American self-perception is the faith that one man can make a difference. Like those faces carved into Mount Rushmore, our history is more often than not told as stories of individual heroes.Paul Revere. George Washington. Abraham Lincoln. Robert E. Lee. Thomas Edison. Douglas MacArthur. There are exceptions, of course, including Meriwether Lewis and William Clark and brothers Orville and Wilbur Wright. And now there is John McCain and Bill Bradley.The Republican and the Democratic underdog presidential candidates have made a show of opposing the "soft" money that is suffocating American politics.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | September 12, 2013
— The Federal Election Commission deadlocked Thursday over a proposal by the Democratic Governors Association to set up an organization that could engage in federal elections — a result that effectively permits the new group to go forward. After a series of meetings and hours of debate, the five members of the commission wound up in essentially the same position they began: a de facto party-line vote that will allow the DGA to create a group called Jobs & Opportunity that will expand its electoral reach.
Advertisement
NEWS
By Fred Wertheimer | June 5, 2000
WASHINGTON - Traditionally, the public battle over soft money in American politics has revolved around the issue of buying and selling government influence. Campaign finance reform advocates believe these unlimited campaign contributions are corrupting our democracy while defenders of soft money argue that it represents constitutionally protected free speech. What has been mostly lost in this debate, however, is the dramatic extent to which the soft money system has turned into a political extortion racket.
NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | August 10, 2013
The Democratic Governors Association is seeking a ruling that would allow it to expand its role in federal elections as its chief fundraiser, Gov. Martin O'Malley, is considering a run for president, documents filed with the Federal Election Commission show. In a case that could be decided as early as this month, the Washington-based governors group is seeking to increase its ability to perform voter registration and get-out-the-vote efforts in gubernatorial races - and its leadership stresses that it has no intention of engaging in campaigns for Congress or the White House.
NEWS
By Ellen Sauerbrey | July 10, 2001
HOUSE DEMOCRATIC Caucus Chairman Martin Frost of Texas observed the following about the effects of proposed campaign finance reform legislation: "The political parties would be neutered, and third-party groups would run the show." The McCain-Feingold bill banning soft money, which has passed the Senate, would have deprived the Democratic Party of half of its funds and the Republican Party of one-third of its funds in the last election cycle. In campaign finance jargon, "soft money" is evil money, or so we are told.
NEWS
By Jules Witcover | March 12, 2004
WASHINGTON - Reforming use of money in political campaigns is like trying to reform drug abuse in professional sports. In both, it seems that whenever a remedy is found, a new way to counter it is found. In monitoring today's pro athletes, no sooner is a performance-enhancing drug detected and outlawed than another one likely will come into play. In monitoring the flow of campaign money, every new effort to put a lid on it is overcome by another way to keep the dollar spigot turned on. The passage of the McCain-Feingold legislation - cutting off unregulated, or "soft," money to federal candidates and parties - has been met this year with a proliferation of independent groups rushing to fill the void in the 2004 presidential election.
NEWS
By Jack W. Germond and Jules Witcover | November 15, 1999
WASHINGTON -- It is becoming increasingly clear that Hillary Rodham Clinton is getting a lot of help from high places in her campaign to become a senator from New York. It is also becoming clear that she needs whatever help she can get.The decision by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee to finance TV commercials promoting her candidacy is obviously indefensible on several counts.Mrs. Clinton is being given the kind of special treatment that other Democrats running for the Senate have every reason to resent.
NEWS
By Jack W. Germond and Jules Witcover | October 18, 1999
WASHINGTON -- There was a certain irony in the fact that Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt was cleared by a special prosecutor while the Senate was debating whether to outlaw "soft money" in political campaigns.If soft money, meaning totally unregulated contributions to political parties, had not been part of the process, Mr. Babbitt would not have been the subject of the special investigation in the first place.The issue in the Babbitt case was whether the Interior secretary rejected a plan to operate a casino put forward by Indian tribes in Wisconsin because other tribes running competing casinos contributed $230,000 in soft money to the Democratic Party.
NEWS
By C. FRASER SMITH | October 1, 2000
THE diminutive candidate with the tall principles stood on a chair to greet the faithful gathered last Thursday at the Rams Head Tavern in Savage. They had come to help with the quadrennial laying in of funds for a political campaign that will cost between $30,000 and $40,000 -- hard money for hard requirements: lawn signs, bumper stickers, phone calling and headquarters rental. Here, in a small corner of the democracy, money equals speech in ways the U.S. Supreme Court had in mind when it declined to reform the process by outlawing political action committees and the like.
NEWS
By Jack W. Germond and Jules Witcover | July 7, 2000
WASHINGTON -- Now that the initial euphoria has passed over the enactment of the first modest campaign finance reform in 21 years, the key question is whether it's the first step toward more significant advances, or an excuse for ignoring further reform. Congress' agreement to require certain tax-exempt groups under Section 527 of the tax code to disclose political expenditures made, and the hitherto-secret names of individuals who provide the money for them, is being hailed as a breakthrough.
NEWS
March 27, 2010
Two court decisions Friday are likely to help set the ground rules for 2010 election fundraising. The Republican Party lost its bid to raise unlimited contributions, while a conservative group won approval to raise big donations for ads but must regularly disclose its givers. The two rulings are the first major campaign finance decisions since the Supreme Court said earlier this year that corporations, unions and groups of individuals can spend unlimited sums supporting or opposing candidates - as long as they do it independently of campaigns.
NEWS
By David L. Greene and David L. Greene,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | July 21, 2004
WASHINGTON - The amount of cash bankrolling the two presidential campaigns this year is approaching and might well exceed $1 billion - an eye-popping number that has shattered any hope that recent campaign finance reform would put a brake on spending. Alone, President Bush and Democrat John Kerry will, by this summer, have raised at least $565 million, according to new figures released by the government and the campaigns yesterday. That includes $230 million for Bush (a record in the history of presidential campaigns)
NEWS
By Lisa Getter and Lisa Getter,LOS ANGELES TIMES | April 1, 2004
WASHINGTON - In a complaint filed with the Federal Election Commission, the Bush campaign and the Republican Party charge that Sen. John F. Kerry is benefiting from "the largest illegal infusion of soft money from wealthy individuals, unions, corporations and other special interests" since Watergate. "They're making a mockery of what the rules are," President Bush's campaign chairman, Marc Racicot, said yesterday in unveiling the complaint. Republicans alleged that Kerry, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, is part of an "unprecedented illegal conspiracy" to coordinate advertising with well-funded liberal groups in violation of campaign finance laws - a claim that the Kerry campaign and the groups and their donors adamantly deny.
NEWS
By Jules Witcover | March 12, 2004
WASHINGTON - Reforming use of money in political campaigns is like trying to reform drug abuse in professional sports. In both, it seems that whenever a remedy is found, a new way to counter it is found. In monitoring today's pro athletes, no sooner is a performance-enhancing drug detected and outlawed than another one likely will come into play. In monitoring the flow of campaign money, every new effort to put a lid on it is overcome by another way to keep the dollar spigot turned on. The passage of the McCain-Feingold legislation - cutting off unregulated, or "soft," money to federal candidates and parties - has been met this year with a proliferation of independent groups rushing to fill the void in the 2004 presidential election.
NEWS
February 22, 2004
TWO YEARS AGO, Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. pilloried Democrats for fostering a "culture of corruption" in Annapolis. As a candidate for governor, he spoke of the importance of ethics in the State House. On his first day in office, he signed an executive order binding executive branch employees to the "highest standards of integrity." Yet, here we are 13 months into office and Mr. Ehrlich's supporters have already tried to shake down lobbyists for as much as $50,000 a pop to play golf with the governor.
NEWS
By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE | February 19, 2004
WASHINGTON - The Federal Election Commission said yesterday that advocacy groups that were established to get around fund-raising restrictions in the new campaign finance law may continue to spend unlimited donations for television commercials and other communications, though they must do so under far more restrictive rules. The commission's ruling on so-called "527 committees" could have profound effects on the 2004 election by helping the Democratic Party, which has been much more aggressive than Republicans in creating these committees to help the party compete with the Republicans' overall 2-1 fund-raising advantage.
NEWS
By JACK W. GERMOND AND JULES WITCOVER | June 6, 1997
WASHINGTON -- The Republicans are certainly correct that President Clinton is playing politics in planning to petition the Federal Election Commission to bar unrestricted ''soft money'' contributions to political campaigns.Still, it's about time. Soft money -- funds given without limit to political parties under the guise of helping party-building rather than specific candidates -- has made a joke of legal limits on who can contribute to individual office-seekers and how much.The Republicans don't want to see soft money prohibited without other reforms as well.
NEWS
By Greg Garland and Greg Garland,SUN STAFF | January 13, 2004
State Prosecutor Stephen Montanarelli said yesterday that he is closing a six-month investigation of Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller's fund-raising practices because he found no evidence of any violations of Maryland election laws. The decision lifts a cloud hanging over the Prince George's County Democrat as the General Assembly prepares to start the 2004 legislative session tomorrow. However, federal authorities are continuing a separate inquiry into Miller. "I don't think that he should have this hanging over him because I don't have any evidence of any criminal conduct on his part regarding violations of state election law," Montanarelli said.
NEWS
By Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Julie Hirschfeld Davis,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | December 11, 2003
WASHINGTON - In a landmark ruling yesterday with implications for the 2004 elections and beyond, a narrowly divided Supreme Court upheld the heart of a sweeping campaign finance law that bans large, unregulated donations to political parties. The law, hailed by its supporters as a way to dampen the influence of big money on elections, bars parties and candidates from collecting contributions known as "soft money" that in the past 15 years have become a central element in the way campaigns are financed.
Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.