Yesterday, Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh sent out a press release describing a new bill before the DC Council. The Campaign Finance Reform Amendment Act of 2012 would radically change campaign finance laws in the District of Columbia. Thankfully, Ward 6 Councilman Tommy Wells immediately backed the plan. We wholeheartedly support this bill and encourage our neighbors and fellow DC residents to do the same.
Some of the highlights of this bill include:
- A prohibition on “contributions from all corporate entities, including partnerships, LLCs, and non-profits”.
- Stating “a District contractor cannot donate to a campaign during the application for, or performance of, a contract if the contribution is to a candidate who may vote on or have approval of the contract award…”
- Prohibiting “fundraisers – those who have raised funds in excess of $10,000 – from receiving a government contract, lease, or appointment within two years of fundraising…”
- Stating a “District contractor cannot donate to a campaign during the application for, or performance of, a contract if the contribution is to a candidate who may vote on or have approval of the contract award…”
Corruption is rife in DC politics and we consider these no-brainer solutions to the current campaign finance law. It is unclear whether or not such a bill would be upheld in the courts. Recently, the Supreme Court blocked a Montana Supreme Court decision that upheld a century-long ban on corporate contributions.