NTF issue paper: cong65.doc. 2-19.

BACKGROUND. Socialist Democrats masquerade this bill as an anti-corruption bill. Democrats have a reputation for naming legislation after its opposite intended effect. The bill, sponsored by liberal Rep. John Sarbanes (MD.), in reality would curtail our most precious constitutional rights. It would severely restrict free speech and give one-party rule to Socialist Democrats. This bill would fundamentally undermine our electoral system. A better title for this bill is The Democrat Politician Protection Act.

MANY NEGATIVES. The bill would force political action committees to disclose publicly all their contributors, exposing them to harassment by leftwing radicals. HR 1 would overturn the 2010 Supreme Court ruling on Citizens United, which gratefully gave corporations the same rights as individuals in political spending and permitted individuals to donate freely to PACS. The bill would curtail the ability for U.S. corporations who have a foreign national as an executive, director, or even as a shareholder to retain PAC status or donate to other PACs. House of Representatives members could not serve on corporate boards. One clause would reconstitute the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) to seat 5 instead of 6 commissioners, allowing Dems to make the commission more partisan upon gaining a majority. Since Watergate, the commission has functioned as a 6-member body, so neither party can use it to punish political opponents. The federal government would subsidize federal elections for Congress and President by matching each dollar a candidate raises from small contributions of $200 or less with 6 times the amount. It would force the President, Vice-President, and all presidential and vice-presidential candidates to disclose the past 10 years of tax returns. A federal voter registration bureaucracy would require voters to opt out instead of opting in and lie open to massive voter fraud and registration of illegal aliens. HR 1 would prohibit states from removing dead or moved voters through non-forwardable mail. Federal employees would enjoy a new paid federal holiday on Election Day, with 6 additional paid vacation days for federal bureaucrats to work the polls during election time.

UNCONSTITUTIONAL. The Supreme Court already ruled that such provisions violate the Constitution, such as banning groups pooling resources to buy ads on the issues those groups advocate. The Constitution gives primary authority to the sovereign states to conduct elections.

DEMOCRAT RUSE. Its supporters seek to confuse the citizenry by disseminating verbiage about restoring democracy, stopping big money from influencing elections, and enhancement of voting rights with protection against minority voter suppression. Dems actually seek to use this legislation to win back majorities in the Senate in 2020 and win back the presidency. Their objective is to then protect Democrat incumbents and squelch the 1st Amendment, federalism, and individual voter integrity. The bill actually suggests that the Constitution needs an amendment to override 1st Amendment protections. They want free and fair elections, but only if they decide the definition of “free and fair.”

OPPONENTS. More than 150 conservative leaders released a statement opposing HR 1 as fundamentally undermining our electoral system. Active opponents include Ed Meese, the Reagan Att.-General, the Heritage Foundation, Club for Growth, Media Research Center, Judicial Watch, American Conservative Union, Americans for Tax Reform, Family Research Council, Eagle Forum, Tea Party Express, and Tea Party Patriots.

PRIVACY INTRUSION. HR 1 torpedoes Supreme Court rulings that protect elections as fundamental free speech. The FEC could track and file away citizen public political comments, force registration of small political contributions, and make public anyone who contributes to campaign-affiliated organizations. It would widen the kind of speech the commission can define as “campaign-related” and thus regulate. HR 1 would force 501(c)(4) charity organizations to publicly release donor lists. It would require Internet companies to maintain a database of those who purchase more than $500 in political ads per year online, like on Facebook. Many more Americans would have to notify the feds when spending even small amounts of money on campaigning or face penalties. Conservative citizens will fall victim to intimidation and harassment for our private political opinions. A violation of this magnitude would have a chilling effect on political participation. Targeting and persecution by the IRS of conservative groups would appear tepid compared to what would follow from HR 1. We would witness less willingness for people to engage in civil discourse for fear of reprisal for their political beliefs.

STATES MUZZLED. This bill would permit the federal government to interfere in state elections by a process known as preclearance. This ruse, previously barred by the Supreme Court, would force states to obtain permission from the feds for changing hours of election office business, moving a polling place, and efforts to stifle fraud and corruption by preventing falsified registrations and voter data. The feds would force states to initiate mandatory voter registration, ending voting as a voluntary choice, and increasing opportunities for error. States must allow all convicted felons to vote, increasing Democrat advantage. States must extend time for early voting and not limit it, which studies indicate has no effect on voter turnout, and begin same day voter registration, which invites fraud and illegal alien voting. Voting by mail, automatically registering people to vote when they get a drivers license, and allowing a person to register for the first time on Election Day are all more susceptible to fraudulent votes. Individual states could not originate their own laws regarding voting by mail. Mandated free mailing of absentee ballots. States could not cooperate to discover individuals registered in several states at the same time. Election observers could not work with election officials to file formal challenges to suspect voter registrations. Chief election officials in states could not participate in federal election campaigns. States must adopt redistricting commissions that favor the Democrat Party. Ironically, the congressional district represented by Rep. Sarbanes is a very gerrymandered convoluted district geographically, and he seeks to keep it that way.

1ST AMENDMENT ATTACKED. Forcing taxpaying citizens to fund political campaigns with which they disagree is a terrible violation of our 1st Amendment. Permitting the federal government to control the money in political discourse taints the system to keep incumbents in power. The law would attack conservative messages as voter suppression. Making political communication by conservative groups a federal crime would invite federal prosecution, chilling conservative participation and voting in elections.

TAKE ACTION NOW. Contact your representative immediately to vote NO on this intrusive bill, using arguments mentioned above. Our entire electoral system and 1st Amendment rights lie at stake. Email netaxpayers@gmail.com to join our Congress Watch Project.

Research, documentation, and analysis for this issue paper done by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom. This material copyrighted by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, with express prior permission granted for its use by other groups in the NE Conservative Coalition Network. 2-19 C.

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