Constitution

The Challenge of 2014: Regulating the Politics of Money and Voter Protection

The 2012 election cycle saw unprecedented amounts of money flood the political system. While some have minimized the impact of Citizens United v. FEC due to the result at the top of the ticket, the influence of massive, target campaign contributions in other races significantly altered the political landscape at the federal level. When combined with a well funded and systematic effort by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) to alter election procedures at the state level, a herculean effort was required by the Department of Justice and the advocacy community to protect equal access to the ballot box. Despite these efforts, however, voters were still required to endure long lines and complained of election irregularities. As we move toward the 2014 midterm elections, the challenges of last year will be heightened due to historically lower turnout levels, the continuing impact of money politics and even more refined voter suppression efforts.

The 2014 election cycle will present two critical legislative challenges: 1). Regulation of election contributions and expenditures and 2). Modernization of the election system, with an emphasis on early voting and enforcement of voter protection laws. We believe the legislative and outreach strategy necessary to achieve the above objectives.

Legislative and Outreach Strategy

Bills to be Introduced

Bill to Amend Voting Rights Act of 2014 as Introduced

Briefings

  • Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder/Voting Rights Act
  • Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (Gonzales)
  • McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission (docket 12-536)

Hearings

Oversight

Articles/Editorials

1/17/13 - Billion-Dollar Democracy: The Unprecedented Role of Money in the 2012 Elections
A Demos report on the outside spending from new sources on the first presidential election since Citizens United
Source: Adam Lioz & Blair Bowie, January 2013

2/26/13 - Voting rights back in court
Opinion: Each reauthorization of the 1965 law upholds the democratic ideals of this country.
Source: POLITICO, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner and Rep. John Conyers, February 2013

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