News from the Votemaster
If the Supreme Court has any regrets about the stream of money unleashed by the Citizens United decision, it can show them when it decides the American Tradition v. Bullock case, this week or next. Montana had a long history of mining companies bribing state officials until the state passed a law in 1906 banning corporate contributions to political campaigns. A case involving that law came before the Court this year. It could decide that under the tenth amendment to the constitution the federal government does not have the power to regulate corporate contributions but the states do. It could also essentially reaffirm the Citizens United decision by saying the states cannot regulate corporate spending either. This decision could have as much impact as the ruling on the ACA and is being watched very closely.
No matter what the Supreme Court decides in the Montana case, Senate Democrats are planning a vote on the DISCLOSE act. This bill would make the names of donors to superPACs public and would require stockholders to approve spending of corporate money on political campaigns. It has no chance of passing the Senate since minority leader Mitch McConnell is strongly against it. Even if it got through the Senate, it would be killed in the House. Also, although it addresses corporate donations to campaigns, it does nothing to prevent billionaires from making large personal donations.
While some publications are waiting until the Supreme Court rules on the ACA before dissecting the ruling, Politico has a premortem on how it will be perceived. Briefly summarized, the voters don't have a clue what the law does (other than perhaps the mandate). Many don't know it has already gone into effect. Large numbers of voters who oppose the law in principle also support most of its actual provisions. In short, the combination of a controversial decision and a largely ignorant public leaves many opportunities for politicians to spin the outcome any way they want.
While many Democrats have been bashing Wall Street and the big banks for years, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has been trying to cajole them into giving more money to the Democrats. While the bankers definitely do not like being on the receiving end of endless attacks, they are also realistic. If they bet on the wrong horse, there could be problems later. If all their contributions go to the Republicans and President Obama is reelected, he will have little reason to be nice to them. Herein lies Schumer's opening.
In both the presidential race and the Senate race, Arizona seems to be tightening and could become a battleground, just like its neighbors New Mexico Nevada, and Colorado.
|Arizona||46%||49%||Jun 04||Jun 05||PPP|
|Colorado||49%||42%||Jun 14||Jun 17||PPP|
|Washington||49%||41%||Jun 13||Jun 16||Elway Poll|
|State||Democrat||D %||Republican||R %||I||I %||Start||End||Pollster|
|Arizona||Richard Carmona||41%||Jeff Flake||43%||Jun 04||Jun 05||PPP|
|Montana||Jon Tester||47%||Denny Rehberg||49%||Jun 18||Jun 18||Rasmussen|
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