Sunday, December 21, 2008

Courtroom Victory

To say that I've been busy is an understatement, but in the Coincidental Timing Department, comes this bit of news from Common Cause. A federal district court in Connecticut turned down a constitutional challenge to that state's recently passed pay-to-play ban:
The court held that the law, one of the strictest laws in the nation banning “pay to play” contributions, was constitutional, a decision that could have wide impact on states considering similar policies in light of the arrest of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.
The federal court opinion is available online here.

And the following quote from the release just shows that for the time being, our state will continue to be the poster boy for political corruption.
“Today's decision is a clear victory for good government. The current shameful situation in Illinois -- and the earlier corruption scandals in Connecticut that prompted enactment of this law -- show that too often politicians are willing to trade away their offices for private gain. This law protects taxpayers by assuring that those seeking to do business with the state are not paving their way with campaign contributions. Ending pay-to-play government must be a primary goal of both state and federal officials," said Laura MacCleery, Deputy Director of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at the NYU School of Law, which assisted the law firm, Hogan & Hartson in serving as counsel for Intervenor-Defendants in the case.
What I do find interesting is who the plaintiffs were in the case. The Association of Connecticut Lobbyists and the Green Party of Connecticut. The first one I get, but the second one just strikes me as odd.

In any event, it's another victory for banning pay-to-play politics.

3 Comments:

At December 21, 2008 at 10:40 PM, Blogger Cal Skinner said...

Go for it, John.

 
At December 22, 2008 at 10:24 AM, Anonymous lake county democrat said...

Good news. And I was delighted to hear you take on Dick Kay a week ago over the issue of a special election -- something John Kaas apparently didn't catch (I don't know if he's always been an Air America-type Machiavelian or just since Kay joined their station, but to hear a "progressive" so blatantly say he didn't care if the public wanted a special election because they might elect someone like Mark Kirk was startling to say the least!)

 
At December 22, 2008 at 4:48 PM, Blogger patrickfkelly said...

If you read the complaint filed by the Green Party (and Libertarian Party, for that matter) it paints a pretty clear picture as to why they're against this bill. In supposedly abolishing pay-to-play, the bill creates a wacky campaign finance system that burdens third parties while helping major party candidates, while giving anyone who wanted to game the system plenty of loopholes to play with.

http://brennan.3cdn.net/b4ba9cbfee47b4517a_wbm6b9058.pdf

 

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