Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has introduced a new version of the DISCLOSE Act
according to a copy of the bill, which requires a raft of on-screen or on-air
disclosures on radio and TV campaign ads identifying what groups or individuals are
bill, a version of which has already passed the House, was a response to the
Supreme Court ruling last September that lifted the limits, but retained
disclosure requirements, on direct funding by corporations and unions of electioneering
communications (ads supporting or opposing the election of a candidate) in the
run-up to federal elections and primaries.
legislation is written so that the disclosures, which some broadcasters have
argued could take up all of a 15-second spot and most of a 30, would not apply
if the commercial is so short that it would "constitute a hardship to the
person paying for the communication by requiring a disproportionate amount of
the communications content to consist of the [disclaimer]."
bill is also written so that the new requirements will apply immediately upon
passage, whether or not the Federal Election Commission has produced
regulations to implement it (which would be hard to do before it passes).
is so the disclosures will apply to campaign ads for the mid-term elections.
The Senate could act on the
bill as early as next week.