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Why Campaign Finance Reform Would Not Pass Today

Ryan Sager's column in the New York Post on (and his companion piece at Miscellaneous Objections) about the con job perpetrated on the nation called "campaign finance reform," reveals that it was in fact a sham promulgated by the Pew Charitable Trusts and a few other left-wing foundations. The architect of the phony movement is caught on tape admitting that what appeared to be a groundswell movement to Congress was really smoke and mirrors orchestrated by monied interests.

Former Pew project manager Sean Treglia tells the whole story, and this section about how they nearly got caught:

Back to the videotape, where an unidentified (but apparently sympathetic) individual asks Treglia: "What would have happened had a major news organization gotten a hold of this at the wrong time?"

"We had a scare," Treglia says. "As the debate was progressing and getting pretty close, George Will stumbled across a report that we had done and attacked it in his column. And a lot of his partisans were becoming aware of Pew's role and were feeding him information. And he started to reference the fact that Pew had played a large role in this - that this was a liberal attempt to hoodwink Congress."

"But you know what the good news is from my perspective?" Treglia says to the stunned crowd. "Journalists didn't care . . . So no one followed up on the story. And so there was a panic there for a couple of weeks because we thought the story was going to begin to gather steam, and no one picked it up."

Treglia's right. While he admits Pew specifically instructed groups receiving its grants "never to mention Pew," all these connections were disclosed (as legally required) in various tax forms and annual reports. "If any reporter wanted to know, they could have sat down and connected the dots," he said. "But they didn't."

Want to bet that wouldn't happen today? Bloggers would have been all over that story.

Mark Tapscott of the Heritage Foundation sums it up well in the title to his story on the Treglia story, "Former Pew Executive Described $39 Million, Six-Year Strategy to "Create Impression of Groundswell of Support" for Campaign Finance Reform." If you read Mark's story you'll also note that Pew-funded research is deeply embedded in the McCain-Feingold law.

You can see the full video of Treglia's presentation here.. Alternate site.


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Comments (8)

If culpability for the sham... (Below threshold)

If culpability for the sham sticks to the Pew Trust, why would anybody want to be associated with them?

And, will this affect the re-electability of Sen. John McCain and Sen. Russ Feingold?

And who failed to veto it?<... (Below threshold)
Just John:

And who failed to veto it?

Campaign finance reform has... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

Campaign finance reform has got to be one of worst laws congress has ever passed, and I still don't understand how the SCOTUS upheld it.

I would love to say it would affect the reelectability of McCain and Fiengold, but I doubt it will. I suspect it will most likely kill any hopes McCain may be harboring for another run at the presidency. I just can't see the GOP base rallying to McCain anytime soon.

But the left will rally to ... (Below threshold)

But the left will rally to Feingold and create an imaginary case against any Republicans who had a hand in it. You can bet the farm on it. They're already giving Feingold virtual hugs at Kos.

And who failed to veto i... (Below threshold)

And who failed to veto it?

Argh. Don't remind us.

There were blogs back then.... (Below threshold)

There were blogs back then. I was reading them. Perhaps not as many, nor with as many readers, but they were there.

- Is this part of the same ... (Below threshold)

- Is this part of the same PEW that gave us the exit pools?

Tapscott's article is grave... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Tapscott's article is gravely interesting...those comments about the Supreme Court decision footnotes being lifted from the Pew "research" is particularly interesting.

More emphasis on the use of the media by liberal groups/persons for to mislead.




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