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New Bill Would Allow More Campaign Money to Flow to Legislative Leaders

The Sacramento Bee reports that special interests could put more money directly into the hands of California legislative leaders, giving them greater influence over campaigns, under a bill unveiled last week as lawmakers left Sacramento for summer recess.

Legislators also added provisions to the bill to require political parties to file more frequent and timely campaign finance reports with the state. They describe Assembly Bill 84 as a measure that increases transparency.

"The real strength of the bill is that we added a disclosure that doesn’t exist right now," said Assemblyman Kevin Mullin, a South San Francisco Democrat who introduced the bill. "I do think it does strengthen leadership's hand in getting good people elected and keeping them elected."

However, political observers and advocates for campaign finance reform raised immediate concerns about the bill.

"Apparently there is more transparency, but the question is in exchange for what?" said Emelyn Rodriguez, a political and election law attorney and former senior counsel at the California Fair Political Practices Commission. "It looks like the exchange could be raising and spending larger or unlimited amounts from more sources and possibly including lobbyist and lobbying entities."

For the full story read here.

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