On Tuesday, President Joe Biden announced that Vice President Kamala Harris would lead the Administration's election law effort. It should come as no surprise that the Biden Administration is assigning the task to Vice President Harris. The Corrupt Politicians Act (H.R.1/S.1), a federal takeover of elections, is the Democrats' number one priority.Read more
Former FEC Chair Brad Smith published an op-ed today in the National Review today entitled: “The First Amendment Is Lucky to Have Mitch McConnell.” That is both a great headline and an accurate salute to the Republican Senate Leader at a time when Democrats have declared war on the First Amendment through the Corrupt Politicians Act (H.R.1/S.1). That said, a key part of Senator McConnell’s leadership on the First Amendment is not partisan:
Surprisingly few elected officials are willing to come to the defense of campaigns and other organized efforts to effect change. Americans celebrate their freedoms to speak and organize into groups, but once an organization achieves success, support for its rights tends to give way to concerns about “influence.” It’s rare to find politicians who support equally the freedom to speak of the NRA and the Brady Campaign, the League of Conservation Voters and the Chamber of Commerce, or pro-life groups and Planned Parenthood.
For over a quarter century, Mitch McConnell has stood as the Senate’s most consistent, articulate, and dogged defender of the First Amendment rights these organizations rely on. Way back in 1994, he engineered the defeat of a bill to fund campaigns with Americans’ tax dollars, a policy that remains at the top of the progressive agenda today and that reappears in S. 1. He has frustrated bad ideas from the right, too, such as in 2006, when he was one of only three Senate Republicans to oppose an amendment to the U.S. Constitution permitting the criminalization of flag-burning. That amendment fell just one vote short.Read more
As we noted earlier this week, one of the most contentious issues that came up during Senate Rules' markup of the Corrupt Politicians Act was felon voting rights. As multiple Republicans pointed out, reasonable minds can differ on the issue, but the Democrats have taken it too far. Their position is so problematic that it's worth a second look.Read more
In a marathon hearing today, the Senate Rules Committee held a markup for S.1, the Senate version of the "Corrupt Politicians Act." The hearing covered a variety of topics, but one thing is abundantly clear: the Corrupt Politicians Act is a partisan power grab, and Democrats will do whatever they can to gain as much power as possible. As Senator Hagerty put it, S.1 is a "power grab in search of a crisis." The vote to advance the bill was tied at 9-9, but under Senate rules, the legislation will advance to the floor for consideration.Read more
Article VI, Clause 3 of the U.S. Constitution states: “no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.” Yet H.R.1, nicknamed the "Corrupt Politicians Act," clearly states (emphasis added):
An individual is eligible to serve as a member of an independent redistricting commission if the individual meets each of the following criteria: . . .
(iv) The reason or reasons the individual desires to serve on the independent redistricting commission, the individual’s qualifications, and information relevant to the ability of the individual to be fair and impartial, including, but not limited to— (I) any involvement with, or financial support of, professional, social, political, religious, or community organizations or causes;Read more
On Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing about recent state election reforms across the country. The title of the hearing itself was an offensive and insensitive characterization of the reforms, saying they are a repeat of the discriminatory voting laws in the Jim Crow South.
RM @ChuckGrassley: "The title of this hearing is offensive. . . This title diminishes the very real challenges and unfairness that minorities endured in the Jim Crow South at the hands of Southern Democrats. . . Polarizing rhetoric that distorts history is not helpful."— RNLA ⚖️ (@TheRepLawyer) April 20, 2021
The backlash by woke corporate interests in response to Georgia's new election law got even worse over the weekend, and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has something to say about it: “We are witnessing a coordinated campaign by powerful and wealthy people to mislead and bully the American people," he said in a statement released on Monday morning.
Our private sector must stop taking cues from the Outrage-Industrial Complex. Americans do not need or want big business to amplify disinformation or react to every manufactured controversy with frantic left-wing signaling. My full statement: https://t.co/3Ck3qW4Mbe— Leader McConnell (@LeaderMcConnell) April 5, 2021
Earlier today, the Senate Rules Committee held a hearing on the Corrupt Politicians Act. As Senator Cruz pointed out, Democrats have made keeping themselves in power their #1 priority for this Congress despite the myriad of important issues facing the country.Read more
On Wednesday, Senate Democrats announced their version of the "For the People Act" (a.k.a. the "Corrupt Politicians Act"). The Corrupt Politicians Act represents a permanent, partisan power grab by Democrats who will do what they can to keep Democrats in power at any cost. his Friday, RNLA will host a webinar featuring Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill and the Chairman of the Institute for Free Speech, Bradley Smith, to discuss the kind of litigation we might expect if parts of the Corrupt Politicians Act are passed or if President Biden forces measures through executive action.
One of the most prominent concerns with the Act is how it will restrict the freedom of speech of Americans. As Professor Smith wrote with IFS President David Keating:
Proponents of H.R. 1 say they want to make democracy work for the people, a popular but meaningless cliché. In reality, H.R. 1 creates new burdens on your rights, as Americans, to speak, assemble, and petition the government.
The threats to free speech in the so-called “For the People Act” span hundreds of pages and are too numerous to cover in their entirety here. But the short version is this: The bill makes speaking easier for politicians and harder for American citizens. It subsidizes politicians’ campaigns while allowing elected officials and their allies to compile enemies lists of private supporters of causes they don’t like. It imposes crushing regulatory burdens on groups that speak about elections, government or legislation.
The groups citizens rely on to monitor Washington and voice their concerns — such as the ACLU, the NRA, the Sierra Club and countless others — will be newly shackled. As just one example, the bill would regulate any “public communication” that “promotes, supports, attacks or opposes” any candidate. Groups will be scratching their heads trying to figure out what qualifies.Read more