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Thursday, January 08, 2009

Can You Remove Our Donor Records, Pretty Please?

Passing along from Justin McLachlan's blog:

The ballot measure committee Protectmarriage.com and the National Organization for Marriage have asked a federal court to force California to remove campaign donor records from public view (expunge them completely, actually) and declare that the state's campaign disclosure law -- insomuch as it makes them file reports after the election is over and allows/requires those reports be publicly available after the election -- violates the First Amendment.

The groups said that "there is a reasonable probability that the Act's compelled disclosure requirements will result in threats, harassment, and reprisals, similar to those already suffered by supporters of Proposition 8."

So, if I get this, the folks who sponsored Prop 8 now want the fact that they supported it hidden? What chicanery! And think of the groups that could support all sorts of controversial and divisive legislation, if they know that after the fact they can turn to the courts for a bit of secrecy?


Anonymous said...

Wow. It's really the height of hypocrisy to want to immisce yourself in the privacy of someone's relationships and sexuality and then claim privacy concerns to hide your support of the 'cause'. I give them props for balls, making this argument.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to suggest that the issue is actually a bit more involved:

As I understand it, the purpose behind donor disclosure rules is to try to prevent people from "buying influence" via donations. If someone donates $400, for example, that is not likely to buy influence.

The purpose of donor disclosure is *not* to force people to disclose publicly their position on issues. One's vote, for example, is considered almost sacredly private. Disclosing a small donation pretty much discloses your position or vote on an issue, but does further at all the cause of preventing influence buying.

Let's be real -- wanting these small donors to be "exposed" is pretty much wanting to make them suffer in some way for their views, not about preventing influence buying.