A Dissenters’ Digest for April 15-21

By: Saturday April 21, 2012 6:00 pm

Dissenters’ Digest takes a look back at the week’s stories covering whistleblowers, watchdogs, and government accountability.


Court Ruling Would Mandate Disclosure on Some Campaign Ad Spending

By: Tuesday April 3, 2012 8:40 am

The Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United decision left open the ability of Congress to pass disclosure rules regarding campaign contributions. Now a ruling in a Federal Election Commission case would force some level of disclosure of those who fund campaign ads.

Colbert’s Super PAC Is a Go

By: Saturday July 2, 2011 6:30 pm

I still can’t tell if his Super PAC is an amazing long-term performance art piece that he will use to help educate the country about the current state of politics, or if its success getting approved is just another sad verification of our political system’s rapid downward spiral into total corporate control.

Ensign Report Shows Sexual Harassment, Cluelessness About the Law

By: Sunday May 15, 2011 5:20 pm

The John Ensign report from the Senate Ethics Committee is really a sad piece of pulp fiction. You have a US Senator in a strong position of power essentially bullying a female subordinate into an affair, refusing to give up on it after being caught several times, finally trying to cover up the evidence of the affair and pay off the participants, and lying and covering his tracks as the plot slowly unravels. That’s about it in a nutshell.

But the details are even seamier.

Ensign Referred to DoJ for Criminal Investigation

By: Thursday May 12, 2011 1:25 pm

Rarely do you see such a strong statement from the Ethics Committee against one of their own, let alone a referral to the Justice Department for criminal prosecution.

Ensign Resigned to Avoid Testimony to Senate Ethics Committee

By: Friday April 22, 2011 3:40 pm

The FEC is hopelessly broken at this stage, but the Senate Ethics Committee appears to have taken its role seriously, and they aren’t going to bury the report just because Ensign would rather run and hide than face up to his actions. They cannot fully disclose the materials gathered over the course of the investigation, but the public statement has the potential to be damning. And they could choose to make a referral to the Justice Department for criminal charges as well.

Van Hollen Files Suit to Force Disclosure of Secret Campaign Donors

By: Friday April 22, 2011 6:59 am

The DISCLOSE Act would have mandated disclosure of most campaign spending. Having failed to achieve that through Congress, Chris Van Hollen is attempting to force the FEC to make certain rules to that effect through a lawsuit.

Kansas Secretary of State Has Election Issues of His Own

By: Saturday March 5, 2011 9:00 am

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach campaigned heavily last year on stopping voter fraud by illegal immigrants and manipulation of elections by “unscrupulous attorneys.” Fast forward to last Thursday, when the FEC accepted an audit of the Kansas Republican Party’s books during 2007 and 2008 that shows illegal contributions from businesses, misstatements of contributions and expenditures, and undisclosed expenses for delegates to the 2008 GOP national convention.

The head of the Kansas GOP at the time? Kris Kobach. Sounds like he really knew what he was talking about when it comes to unscrupulous attorneys trying to manipulate elections.

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