Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. (AP)

Senate Republicans Kill Disclose Act in Blow to Campaign Transparency

Citizens United Remains Unscathed as GOP Senators 'keep public in the dark'

Common Dreams staff

Senate Republicans blocked the Disclose Act Monday night, effectively killing a bid for campaign donor transparency in the post-Citizens United world. The Disclose Act, which was defeated 51-44, would have required independent groups to release the names of campaign donors who give more than $10,000 for political ads and other campaign tactics.

The Act was drafted in response to the 2010 Citizens United ruling, which allows limitless corporate donations to be given to outside political campaigners, known as super PACs, in secret.

"The DISCLOSE Act would help the American people understand who is behind the political messages we’re bombarded with every day,” said Michael Keegan, President of People For the American Way. “Apparently, GOP senators would rather keep the public in the dark about who is bankrolling their campaigns. What do they have to hide?"

"Today, the Senate had a chance to protect the American people’s right to know who is trying to sway their vote. Unfortunately, Senate Republicans chose to protect the anonymity of the wealthy few at the expense of the American public."

The Republican filibuster of the bill was led by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) one of several republican senators who once supported campaign finance disclosure but have recently favored increased secrecy in Washington, including Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Sens. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), and Scott Brown (R-Mass.).

"These same politicians were for the disclosure measure for years, until there was a chance it might actually pass. Now they are filibustering it," said Michael Waldman, at the Brennan Center at NYU.

As a result, corporations will continue to spend large sums of money to influence elections and subsequent policy while remaining anonymous.

* * *

 

Question: On Cloture on the Motion to Proceed (Motion to Invoke Cloture on the Motion to Proceed to S.3369 )
Vote Number: 179Vote Date: July 16, 2012, 06:08 PM
Required For Majority: 3/5Vote Result: Cloture on the Motion to Proceed Rejected
Measure Number: S. 3369
Measure Title: A bill to amend the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to provide for additional disclosure requirements for corporations, labor organizations, Super PACs and other entities, and for other purposes.
Vote Counts:YEAs51
 NAYs44
 Not Voting5

 

# # #


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Supreme Court Denies Trump Bid to Conceal Records From Jan. 6 Panel

One government watchdog group welcomed the decision as "a huge win for transparency."

Jessica Corbett ·


Jayapal, Lee Resolution Promotes More Peaceful US Foreign Policy

"It's far past time we take our foreign policy into the 21st century," said Rep. Barbara Lee. "We should be leading with diplomacy and human needs as the path to global security."

Brett Wilkins ·


Anti-War Veterans Group Issues Its Own 'Nuclear Posture Review'

Released ahead of a Biden administration report, the assessment warns that the danger of nuclear war is greater than ever.

Jessica Corbett ·


Critics Warn Puerto Rico Debt Plan Will Lead to More Austerity

"The island's ability to resume growth and avoid cuts in anti-poverty programs are both chief concerns," said one economic justice advocate.

Julia Conley ·


Faith Leaders, Rights Groups to Biden: End Immigration Detention

"People are losing their lives to a detention system that simply does not need to exist," said one immigrant rights advocate.

Kenny Stancil ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo