Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell Wednesday
slammed the effort by Democrats to bring the DISCLOSE act to a vote in the
The bill could cut into campaign spending on TV
and radio ads by requiring major donors and company executives to appear in
disclosures in those ads. It would also restrict contributions by government
contractors and companies with foreign investors.
Saying that the country wants to focus on jobs and
the economy, McConnell (R-Ky.) said instead the Democrats are pushing
a bill about transparency in elections that "was drafted behind
closed doors without hearings, without testimony, and without any
The bill, he said, "picks and chooses who
gets the right to engage in political speech and who doesn't."
The bill passed the House in June but failed to
get a vote in the Senate when it came a handful of votes short of defeating a
filibuster. The Republicans are expecting Senate Majority leader Harry Reid
(D-Nev.) to schedule the bill for a vote Thursday (Sept. 23).
The legislation is an effort to take some of the
teeth out of a Supreme Court decision a year ago this month removing the ban on
direct funding of federal campaign electioneering ads--for or against--by
corporations and unions in the days leading up to primaries and general
Democrats led by Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)
and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), saw that decision as opening the
floodgates to corporate control of elections.
"[A]fter spending the past year and a half
enacting policies Americans don't like," says McConnell of the
Democratic majority, "they want to prevent their opponents from being able
to criticize what they've done."