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Dems Pushed SEC To Limit Donations By Business

From an editorial in the Wall Street Journal:

The Other Targeting Scandal

Democrats lobbied the SEC to limit business political donations.   

August 6, 2013

The IRS targeting scandal is best understood as part of a larger effort to limit the political speech of conservatives and business groups. That became clearer last week regarding the Federal Election Commission, and now evidence is spreading to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Senior Republicans on the House Oversight Committee recently wrote to new SEC Chairman Mary Jo White to report on disturbing events that occurred under her predecessor, and to request agency documents. As at the IRS, there’s an emerging pattern at the SEC of senior officials rolling over career staff to politicize the work of a powerful federal agency.

Reps. Darrell Issa, Jim Jordan and Patrick McHenry say that documents they already have "indicate that the SEC has been under immense pressure from elected officials and special interest groups as part of a government-wide effort to stifle political speech." They further note that the pressure has largely succeeded in "moving the Commission closer to using its authority to regulate public securities markets as a backdoor way to limit the political speech of the same types of groups targeted by the IRS."

Last year politicians like then-Rep. Barney Frank and liberal tax-exempt groups like Public Citizen were encouraging the SEC to demand more disclosure from public companies about the organizations they support. Staff for Mr. Frank specifically told the SEC that, "There is particular interest in what the authority is for disclosure of 501(c)(4) contributions (political contributions)." Mr. Frank’s staff also noted that the interest was coming from the House Democratic leadership.

A former Democratic Congressman gave the political motive away while lobbying the SEC’s then-chairman Mary Schapiro. The former lawmaker, unnamed in a memorandum accompanying the Issa letter, was asked by Ms. Schapiro why this wasn’t a job for the Federal Election Commission (FEC). The former pol responded, "because the FEC is even more broken than you," according to a May 2012 email sent by the deputy director of the SEC’s division of corporation finance. Democrats couldn’t get what they wanted out of the Congress or the FEC. So they went to the SEC.

The SEC staff pushed back, pointing out that it’s not their job to regulate political speech. An SEC official cautioned in one email about "how well it goes when the securities laws are used for social and political causes." Staff also noted the difficulty of taking on a new discretionary campaign given all the mandated but still unfinished rules they were required to write under Dodd-Frank and the JOBS Act…

In other words, SEC are just too busy to do it now. (After all, they have all that porn to watch.) But they will probably get around to it.

In any case, this is all part of the Democrats’ backdoor push to ‘roll back’ the law after the Supreme Court’s ruling on Citizens United. Which Obama has called for in just about every speech since that ruling came down back in January 2010.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, August 8th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

9 Responses to “Dems Pushed SEC To Limit Donations By Business”

  1. GetBackJack says:

    I’m gladdened in the Long Term when I reflect on the inevitable certainty of Karmic Blowback … that what goes around comes around. The single greatest leveler there is … and utterly evident throughout History … just as players in the game of Power cannot recognize they’re wrapping themselves in the wet leather of payback even as they saunter into the Noonday sun of consequences.

    • GetBackJack says:

      I was replying to the headline, not my pal Nozy

    • Noyzmakr says:

      Yes, that comment was there when I posted. I must say that your writing is very descriptive. I may have to reconsider my reading habits.

    • Chrispbass says:

      Yes Noyz! His writing is downright poetic which is why I want to read his SECOND book. However, I can’t find it anywhere and I can’t get him to contact me *hint hint*.

      GBJ – Steve forwarded you my email address. Please contact me!
      Sorry Steve; go ahead and delete this, I just don’t know how else to contact him.

    • Noyzmakr says:

      Chrispbass, According to the Final Trilogy Website MESA drops a Kindle Release Spring 2013 and iBooks Release Autumn 2013.

      Jusy click his name above. I’m sure he,s not just writing for his health. Shhh… but I think he might be a closet capitalist. LOL.

    • Chrispbass says:

      Yes the website says it will be available but only the 1st one is, as of a couple weeks ago.

    • Noyzmakr says:

      Patience grasshopper….


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