Allowing Ordinary Citizens To Run For Office

On Monday, The Patriot Journal posted an article about a recent Supreme Court decision that will make it easier for the average American to run for political office.

The article reports:

All of America is waiting for the Supreme Court to release a number of ground-breaking rulings. Last week, the court revealed it was set to release “one or more” rulings today.

It seems they are holding off that one ruling and addressing other important cases. One of them came from Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, who was challenging a campaign finance law.

Cruz claimed the law was wrongfully punishing him. And the court, in a 6-3 ruling, backed the senator.

The ruling involved how much money a candidate could raise to pay off their personal debts after an election. In other words, if a candidate funded his own campaign, he could only pay himself back $250,000. Like it or not, in today’s elections, that is chump change. The Supreme Court agreed with Senator Cruz that the cap on how much a candidate could pay himself back was a limitation on free speech. The ruling was 6-3. The Supreme Court’s three liberal judges voted against removing the limit. A vote against removing the limit is a vote to keep the incumbents in power in Washington by making it more difficult for political outsiders to run for office.

The article concludes:

Although this might not seem relevant to us peons who don’t have nearly $250,000 to our names, this benefits anyone who wants to run for public office.

This ruling means someone can donate their own money to their campaign, without fear that they’ll go bankrupt. Because, after an election, they can use campaign funds to pay themselves back.

This ruling can help folks who want to run for public office but had previously avoided out of concerns for their livelihood.

What Does This Say About The Candidate?

Kamala Harris is currently considered the up-and-coming Democrat candidate for President in 2020. She achieved that status after an attack on Joe Biden that stretched the truth more than a little. Well, Ms. Harris is serious about her campaign. The Washington Examiner is reporting today that the Harris campaign hired Marc Elias, who heads Perkins Coie’s political law group.

The article reports:

…Elias, who held the same position in Clinton’s campaign, is named in two pending Federal Election Commission complaints and in a recent federal lawsuit alleging that the Clinton campaign broke campaign finance laws when it used Perkins Coie to hire Fusion GPS.

Fusion GPS went on to hire British ex-spy Christopher Steele, who compiled an unverified dossier allegedly based on sources close to the Kremlin which was disseminated to the media and used by the FBI to obtain Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants targeting former Trump campaign associate Carter Page. Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is reviewing alleged FISA abuse related to the dossier and Attorney General William Barr launched his “investigation of the investigators” earlier this year.

Clinton’s former presidential campaign manager Robby Mook said in 2017 that he authorized Elias to hire an outside firm to dig up dirt on Trump’s connections with Russia. “I asked our lawyer and I gave him a budget allocation to investigate this, particularly the international aspect,” he said.

Mook said Elias was receiving information from Fusion GPS or directly from Steele himself about the research into Trump and Russia in 2016, and that Elias then periodically briefed the Clinton campaign about the findings.

The article concludes:

Elias is a fixture in Democratic politics. Aside from working for Harris, Clinton, and the DNC, Elias has said that he and his colleagues at Perkins Coie have represented the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Democratic Governors Association, various Democratic PACs, the pro-abortion EMILY’s List, dozens of Democratic senators, and more than a hundred Democratic members of the House.

Neither the Harris campaign nor Elias responded to the Washington Examiner’s request for comment.

I wonder if Mr. Elias’ name is going to come up during the release of the Inspector General’s Report or the questioning of Robert Mueller. Stay tuned.

People In Glass Houses…

Yesterday The Washington Free Beacon reported that the Federal Election Commission has sent a letter to Bernie Sanders‘ campaign committee about illegal donations to the campaign.

The article reports:

The campaign’s January financial disclosure filing listed contributions from foreign nationals and unregistered political committees, the FEC said. Other contributions came from donors who exceeded the $2,700 per-election limit.

“Although the Commission may take further legal action concerning the acceptance of [excessive or prohibited] contributions, your prompt action to refund the prohibited amount will be taken into consideration,” the FEC told the campaign.

Sanders’ campaign has relied on small-dollar individual contributions to a far greater extent than any other presidential campaign, including the Super PAC- and dark money-fueled efforts of Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

The Vermont Senator and self-described socialist is running on a platform of transparency and campaign finance reform, contrasting his grassroots support with Clinton’s high-dollar donors and use of loopholes in federal election laws that allow her campaign to coordinate with outside groups that can accept unlimited contributions.

However, Sanders’ donors have also run afoul of federal campaign finance laws, and his financial disclosure reports have been riddled with errors.

Many of the foreign donations come from people in countries that support socialism and want to help the Sanders’ campaign. However, the campaign needs to follow the law and practice the transparency that it preaches.