Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Federal Appeals Court Declares Connecticut's Matching Funds System Unconstitutional

Ruling mirrors Goldwater Institute's challenge to campaign public funding in Arizona

Today, the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals barred the matching funds provisions of Connecticut's version of government funding for political candidates. The unanimous opinion mirrors the Goldwater Institute's arguments in a federal lawsuit that prompted the U.S. Supreme Court to block Arizona's matching funds provision on June 8, 2010.

"The First Amendment requires matching funds to be struck down," said Nick Dranias, Goldwater Institute director of constitutional studies and lead attorney in the lawsuit against Arizona's matching funds provision. "Political speech by one candidate cannot be silenced by the threat of government campaign subsidies to the opposing candidate."

A three-judge panel for the Second Circuit declared that Connecticut's matching funds "imposes a substantial burden on the exercise of the First Amendment right to use personal funds for campaign speech."

The Second Circuit joined U.S. District Court Judge Roslyn O. Silver of Phoenix in recognizing that matching funds punish privately-funded candidates and their supporters by causing their campaign donations and spending to trigger tax subsidies for their opposing publicly-funded candidates.

The Second Circuit's decision also specifically observes, "[t]he Ninth Circuit has recently upheld a 'matching funds' provision of Arizona's public financing system . . . We are not persuaded by the Ninth Circuit's opinion, which, we note, has been stayed by the Supreme Court pending [an appeal]."

The Goldwater Institute Scharf-Norton Center for Constitutional Litigation represents John McComish, Nancy McClain and Tony Bouie, candidates for the Arizona Legislature whose campaigns are funded by private donations. They are appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm a trial court decision in January 2010 against the matching funds component of the Clean Elections system.

The Goldwater Institute will host a telephone town hall tonight at 7:00 p.m. Arizona time to discuss its lawsuit and other issues involving government funding for election candidates. To join the town hall call (888) 886-6603 and enter event ID 15128.

Read more about this and other Goldwater lawsuits to protect individual rights and keep government within its constitutional limits at www.goldwaterinstitute.org/litigation. The Goldwater Institute is an independent government watchdog supported by people who are committed to expanding free enterprise and liberty.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Excellent analysis of elections

Even as South Carolina state Rep. Nikki Haley was being touted as a new Republican star, Rep. Gresham Barrett launched...

...Former President Bill Clinton will hold a campaign rally at the Andre Agassi Preparatory Academy(!) in Las Vegas tonight to benefit Harry Reid (Nev.), part of a serious push by the Senate Majority Leader to seize the momentum in the wake of former state Assemblywoman Sharron Angle's primary win on Tuesday night....

...A new Quinnipiac University poll shows Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (I) continuing to lead in the three-way race to become Florida's next senator....

...Alabama state Rep. Robert Bentley, who finished second in the state's Republican gubernatorial primary, has released a poll showing him up 16 points over former state Sen. Bradley Byrne...

...Virginia state Sen. Robert Hurt (R) is consolidating support after winning Tuesday's primary to face Rep. Tom Perriello (D-Va.). But he still has some work to do....


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Gary Bauer: Obama Outrages…Liberals!

Senate liberals were called to the White House yesterday for a meeting with the president. By the time the conference was over, they and Obama had agreed to take the major expansion of Medicare out of the Senate big government healthcare take-over legislation. By doing so, Democrats won the vote of Senator Lieberman and according to D.C. insiders now have the 60 votes they need to pass this mess, possibly before Christmas.

The good news is that not one Republican has endorsed it, and if even one Democrat breaks ranks it will fail. Ironically, our socialist president is taking hits today from Democrats even further to the left than himself. Former Chairman of the Democratic National Committee Howard Dean blew up yesterday and said the legislation was now worthless and that liberals should vote against it. Liberal websites are full of angry bloggers accusing Obama of selling out. I love seeing the left fighting each other – something that we do too often.

Senator Bernie Sanders (Socialist—VT) introduced a nearly 800-page amendment to the healthcare bill establishing a government-run option. Typically, when an amendment is offered, senators unanimously consent to dispense with the reading of it. But conservatives are playing hardball. Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) is forcing the Senate clerk to read the amendment in full on the Senate floor, which could take the rest of the day. Sanders called the delay tactic “a bit absurd,” but Coburn understands that the little-used strategy could help prevent the left’s goal of passing a bill by Christmas.

It is time to pour phone calls into Senate offices urging a “no” vote on the bill. The Capitol Hill switchboard is 202-224-3121. Ask the operator to connect you to your two senators. Tell the staff people in those offices that you will vote any senator out of office who votes for this trillion-dollar mess that will destroy our health care system and bust the budget.

American Values
2800 Shirlington Road
Suite 950
Arlington, VA 22206
Phone: 703-671-9700
Fax: 703-671-1680

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Protect the Rights of Health Care Workers; Apr 9 Deadline

From CatholicVote.org:

We have a short and simple message for you today. And we need 30 seconds of your help.

Earlier last month, the Obama administration moved to overturn an important federal regulation designed to protect the conscience rights of health care workers. This critical regulation, which President Obama is seeking to end, protects doctors, nurses and health care workers from participating in procedures such as abortion, sterilization, and other objectionable medical procedures.

Ending this protection will allow hospitals and even our own government to discriminate against doctors and medical professionals who do not want to participate in activities they find morally objectionable.

Yes, that is correct. Conscientious doctors, nurses, and other medial professionals may soon be given a stark choice - participate in abortions, sterilizations, and even embryo cloning and embryo killing research, or suffer harsh penalties.

But wait. It hasn't happened yet. For the past 28 days, the public has been given the opportunity to comment on this proposed change. Federal law mandates this comment period so that Americans like you can offer their opinion on the proposed decision. HHS officials responsible for reviewing this proposal need to hear from you before the close of business on Thursday, April 9.

Take action now! E-mail your comments directly to proposedrescission@hhs.gov - tell them to ‘retain the conscience regulations!' You may also submit your comments via a grassroots action center sponsored by the USCCB here. [Just a note: HHS will make available for public viewing all comments and the personal information (e.g. name and address) included in them.]

The United States Catholic Bishops have been vigorously fighting to protect these critical conscience regulations. We must stand with our bishops, and all people of faith, in opposing this change. We must stand up as Americans and demand that our fundamental freedoms be protected.

E-mailing the Department of Heath and Human Services will take 10 seconds! Please don't wait.

Brian Burch,

P.S. Cardinal Francis George warned that this bold move by the Obama administration could be the first step in moving our country from ‘democracy to despotism." We are asking you to spend the next 30 seconds to help make sure this does not happen. Tell the Department of Heath & Human Services to keep the conscience regulations. E-mail them now at proposedrecission@hhs.gov or visit the grassroots action center here.

For an excellent summary of the conscience issue and the proposed changes, please click here.