Category: Challenging Foreign Influence

FEC Commissioner Ellen Weintraub Makes the Case In Support of Seattle’s New Landmark Campaign Finance Law

FEC Commissioner Ellen Weintraub argues in a New York Times opinion piece why Seattle’s new law banning foreign-influenced corporations from spending money in Seattle elections is constitutional and correct.  Commissioner Weintraub writes:   “Seattle, along with other cities and states, doesn’t need to worry. No court has ever come close to holding that the Federal Election
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Following Amazon $1.5 Million Campaign to Try to Remake the Seattle City Council, Lawmakers Ban Foreign-Influenced Corporations from Spending in City Elections

The Seattle City Council voted 7-0 to pass landmark bill on Monday, effectively banning foreign corporate spending in city elections. SEATTLE, WA (January 13, 2020) – The Seattle City Council voted today to pass a landmark campaign finance law that combats the influence of foreign corporate spending in city elections. The legislation, introduced by Councilmember
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Lawmakers Seek to Close Loophole to Stop Foreign-Influenced Corporations From Influencing Maryland Elections

Delegate Palakovich Carr and Senator Lam Prefiled a Bill that would Protect Maryland Elections from Foreign-Influenced Corporations. ANNAPOLIS, MD (January 6, 2020) – Delegate Julie Palakovich Carr and Senator Clarence Lam prefiled a bill that would prohibit spending by foreign-influenced corporations in Maryland elections. The bill would require corporations that spend money in Maryland elections
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New CAP Report on Ending Foreign-Influenced Corporate Spending in U.S. Elections Highlights Problem, Validates FSFP’s Work

A new report from the Center for American Progress, written by senior fellow Michael Sozan, highlights the problem of political spending by foreign-influenced corporations. The report—which cites Free Speech For People’s pioneering legislative work in places like Seattle, St. Petersburg, and Massachusetts—proposes banning political spending by partially-foreign-owned corporations, using the same thresholds for foreign ownership
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Amazon vs. Democracy: Foreign Influence In The Seattle City Council Elections

As of last week, Amazon has poured over $1.5 million into Seattle’s upcoming city council election through the local Chamber of Commerce’s super PAC, The Civil Alliance for a Sound Economy. That total represents more than the combined total raised by candidates without Amazon’s backing. As Rachel Lauter, executive director of the Working Washington advocacy group, said
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Report: Saudi-Led Oil Lobby Group Financed 2012 Dark Money Attack Ads

A new report in The Nation on Friday details how the so-called American Petroleum Institute, a major lobbying group for Big Oil, is both funded in part by a Saudi oil company and directed in part by a registered foreign agent for Saudi Arabia who heads a subsidiary of that Saudi oil company.

It also reports that the Institute’s 2011 tax returns show almost half a million dollars in gifts to dark-money organizations that ran attack ads in America’s most recent elections — and that’s just what the Big Oil group spent in 2011. Just imagine what the 2012 figures could be.

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Alaska Dispatch: “Foreign corporations funnel millions into US elections”

The Alaska Dispatch has a new story on foreign corporate spending on our elections. Excerpts are below.

Caveat: while the article accurately notes that it’s illegal for foreign individuals to spend money to influence U.S. elections, the article is incorrect in asserting that such spending by corporations is also illegal. Unfortunately for all of us, Citizens United removed such restrictions on corporate spending, which is one of many serious reasons we must overturn it with a constitutional amendment.

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