Republicans in the U.S. Senate voted unanimously Monday and again on Tuesday
to block adoption of the Disclose Act,
...legislation to require disclosure of political donations of more than $10,000
within 24 hours of the money being spent.
...For years, [elected officials] had vowed that disclosure of donations and spending
was the one sure route to an honest campaign-finance system.
The Disclose Act, by contrast,
is a fairly straightforward effort to subject political donations to sunlight,
and keep the political bagmen at bay.
“I think what we ought to do is we ought to have full disclosure,
full disclosure of all of the money that we raise and how it is spent.
And I think that sunlight is the best disinfectant.”
Speaker of the House John Boehner
(NBC, “Meet the Press” transcript, Feb. 11, 2007)
“Anything that moves us back towards that notion of transparency
and real-time reporting of donations and contributions
I think would be a helpful move towards restoring confidence of voters.”
Majority Leader Eric Cantor
(Newsweek, “SCOTUS Ruling Spells Disaster for Political Transparency,” Jan. 21, 2010)
“I think people should disclose.
I have no problem with disclosing information.
And it should be that way.”
House Whip Kevin McCarthy
(National Public Radio, Sept. 23, 2010)
"527s are just a handful of groups.
We need to have real disclosure.
And so what we ought to do is broaden the disclosure
to include at least labor unions and tax-exempt business associations and trial lawyers
so that you include the major political players in America.
Why would a little disclosure be better than a lot of disclosure?”
Senate Minority Leader McConnell
(“Meet the Press,” June 18, 2000)
“I support campaign finance reform, but to me that means individual contributions,
free speech and full disclosure.
In other words, any individual can give whatever they want
as long as it is disclosed every day on the Internet.
Otherwise, you restrict free speech and favor super-rich candidates
-- candidates with famous names, the media and special interest groups,
all of whom can spend unlimited money.
Senator Lamar Alexander
(Washington Post, May 19, 1999)
“I don’t like it when a large source of money is out there funding ads
and is unaccountable.
To the extent we can, I tend to favor disclosure.”
Senator Jeff Sessions
(The Hill, “Campaign finance bill has GOP wary,” April 22, 2010)
“I think the system needs more transparency,
so people can more easily reach their own conclusions.”
Senator John Cornyn
“What do both parties have in common? Wall Street donations,” April 25, 2010)
A charitable interpretation of these statements is that the words have no meaning.
A less charitable interpretation is that they convey something important about the speakers."
Bloomberg Editorial Board