Post Archive by Month: August,2016

Does Hillary Clinton really want to be president?

Issue One Advisory Board member and former chief ethics lawyer for President George W. Bush asked Hillary Clinton the only question that matters in the discussion about the Clinton Foundation: Do you really want to be president? In his New York Times column, Richard Painter reminds leaders, advocates and everyday Americans alike that he has encountered ethical situations similar to

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Former anti-FEC chair wants FEC to work

So now you want the FEC to work, Donald McGahn? It’s a little too late. Yesterday, Donald Trump’s top political attorney and former Federal Election Commission Chair Donald McGahn spit fire at a super PAC that has raised $1 million by promising donors they could win dinner with the Republican nominee, according to Politico. The PAC is not connected with

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ReFormer Tom Petri on Citizens United, dialing for dollars and congressional gridlock

Rep. Tom Petri, a former Republican Congressman from Wisconsin, recently took listener calls on Wisconsin Public Radio. He is a member of Issue One’s ReFormers Caucus, the largest group of bipartisan former lawmakers ever assembled on behalf of money in politics reform. Rep. Petri is one of 50 Republicans in the Caucus who believe reducing the influence of money in

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Gov. Deval Patrick joins the ReFormers Caucus

Issue One is pleased to welcome former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick to the ReFormers Caucus. Governor Patrick joins 150 former elected officials from both parties — 22 of whom are also former governors — in their fight to reduce the influence of money in politics. “Governor Patrick made history as the first and only African-American to serve as Massachusetts governor

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The Clinton Foundation’s legacy of access

New emails released from the State Department during presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s time in charge reveal a disappointing trend: a series of exchanges between Clinton Foundation heads and donors that culminated in access to the Secretary of State herself. While the emails, as of now, fail to show any actual favors granted, the general practice of donations-for-access is quite troubling.

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Virginia legislators accept fewer gifts

The state of Virginia has some of the most lax gift laws in the country. Perhaps that’s why its last three governors have found themselves in hot water in one way or another because of contributions and gifts. But while little has changed in the state’s law even after governor after governor faces blinding scrutiny for their judgment, or lack

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What’s the matter with Miami-Dade?

NOTE: This page has been updated for further developments. Strange things are afoot in Miami-Dade County. Florida’s most populous county is the subject of a heated debate over money in politics. Earlier this month, Accountable Miami-Dade collected 127,000 petition signatures to add an initiative to this November’s ballot. The initiative would ban gifts to candidates by lobbyists or government contractors, lower

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Reform in the states: A round-up

This is part of a series examining ethics, transparency and campaign finance proposals in the states.  As presidential candidates criss-cross the country campaigning for the Oval Office, it is important to remember that states — those laboratories of democracy — are not waiting for Congress and the president to tackle their own ethics and political issues. Here’s a brief round-up of what

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Rep. Jim Gerlach slams the DNC on fundraising

This op-ed originally appeared in RealClearPolitics. As if Americans needed more reasons to fundamentally distrust their government, a package of nearly 20,000 leaked Democratic National Committee emails recently landed on doorsteps around the country in the form of news headlines.  Squirreled away in the messages are kernels of insight into how some Washington politicians and their staff continue to court the donor

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Donors who want social change should do more to fix democracy

This op-ed originally appeared in the Chronicle of Philanthropy. For every generation of Americans there arises a critical and often unexpected challenge that demands thoughtful, effective, and cooperative action in the public interest. For Americans today, the most vital possible cause is at stake. That is the issue that contains and defines all other issues in our civic life: the

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Read “Why We Left Congress: How the Legislative Branch Is Broken and What We Can Do About It”

Issue One’s new joint report with the R Street Institute examines the legislative branch’s dysfunction through conversations with members who have voluntarily departed in the 2018 cycle. Read the full report and proposed solutions in “Why We Left Congress: How the Legislative Branch is Broken and What We Can Do About Ithere.