Minneapolis Star-Tribune: Ex-Bachmann aide alleges campaign finance violations

Filing says her PAC wrongly paid a longtime consultant.

-By Kevin Diaz

January 15, 2013- WASHINGTON – A top adviser in Michele Bachmann's 2012 White House bid has filed a complaint with federal election officials alleging campaign finance violations involving her presidential campaign and the independent political action committee she leads.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) complaint was filed Tuesday by Peter Waldron, a widely known evangelist enlisted by the Bachmann campaign for outreach to Christian conservatives. The filing follows his allegations last week that the Bachmann campaign has withheld payments to staffers who refused to sign confidentiality agreements.

Waldron, formerly Bachmann's national field coordinator, is accusing the campaign of improperly dipping into money from MichelePAC to pay longtime fundraising consultant Guy Short for presidential campaign work he performed in the critical final weeks ahead of Iowa's caucuses last year.

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Washington Post: Supreme Court rebuffs GOP request to end order aimed at preventing voter intimidation

-Associated Press

January 14, 2013- WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has turned down an effort by the Republican National Committee to end a 30-year-old court order aimed at preventing intimidation of minority voters.

The justices did not comment Monday in rejecting an appeal of lower court decisions that left the order in place at least until 2017.

The order stems from a lawsuit filed by Democrats in New Jersey in 1981 that objected to a “ballot security” program the RNC ran in minority neighborhoods.

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Huffington Post: Call Time For Congress Shows How Fundraising Dominates Bleak Work Life

-By Ryan Grimm & Sabrina Siddiqui

January 8, 2013- WASHINGTON — Welcome to town, new members of Congress. Now hit the phones.

For an incoming member of Congress still basking in the glow of electoral victory, it's a message that hits those in both parties hard — the most direct indication that time in the people's chamber will be a bit different from the version taught in civics classes.

For new Democrats, that message was delivered on Nov. 16, barely a week after the election, at an incoming-member orientation held by the House campaign arm.

The amount of time that members of Congress in both parties spend fundraising is widely known to take up an obscene portion of a typical day — whether it's "call time" spent on the phone with potential donors, or in person at fundraisers in Washington or back home. Seeing it spelled out in black and white, however, can be a jarring experience for a new member, as related by some who attended the November orientation.

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Salon: Court won’t hear campaign finance arguments

-Associated Press

January 7, 2013- WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court will not hear an appeal from an anti-abortion group that wanted to be exempted from campaign finance disclosure regulations.

The high court on Monday refused to hear an appeal from The Real Truth About Abortion, Inc., which was formerly called The Real Truth About Obama, Inc. The group wanted to stop the Federal Election Commission and the Justice Department from enforcing fundraising and advertising regulations against it.

The Virginia based group, which was formed by anti-abortion activists, says its “issue advocacy” amounts to constitutionally protected free speech that does not expressly advocate the election or defeat of a candidate. The group also says that Federal Election Commission rules defining PACs and their activity are unconstitutionally broad and vague.

The lower courts have disagreed.

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