Steve Moore of the Club For Growth sent out an email today to CFG members discussing CFG’s next step in light of the McConnell decision. I agree with Steve and encourage you the Reader to join CFG. The text of his letter, in full, is in the extended entry.
Here’s what Senator John McCain said during the debate about passing the campaign finance law upheld by the Court last week:
“What we’re trying to do is stop organizations like the so-called Club for Growth that . . . spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in attack ads.”
We are shocked and appalled by the Supreme Court’s ruling upholding draconian restrictions on our ability to even mention the name of a congressman or candidate name within 30 days of a primary election, or 60 days before a general election.
Justice Antonin Scalia was exactly right when he wrote in his blistering dissent that “This is a sad day for the freedom of speech. Who could have imagined that the same Court which, within the past four years, has sternly disapproved of restrictions upon such inconsequential forms of expression as virtual child pornography, tobacco advertising, dissemination of illegally intercepted communications, and sexually explicit cable programming would smile with favor upon a law that cuts to the heart of what the First Amendment is meant to protect: the right to criticize the government. For that is what the most offensive provisions of this legislation are all about.”
The Club was one of the many plaintiffs that petitioned the Court to strike down the law. We are disgusted that Sandra Day O’Connor and David Souter joined the three other liberal judges on the Court to erode our protections under the Bill of Rights. After all, James Madison once wrote that the Supreme Court is supposed to be “the bulwark of our liberties.”
As the above quote from John McCain indicates, this law is intended to reduce the clout of the Club for Growth. That’s a tribute to our success. We want to reassure you that this new law will not stop our activities. It will in no way weaken our resolve to continue to elect solid free market, pro-growth candidates, to speak out for tax cuts and other vital issues to our economy and to continue running our award-winning and influential TV and radio ads, when appropriate. The limitation on “soft dollar” advertising by the Club makes our fundamental mission of raising and bundling dollars for our candidates all the more valuable. No other group is able to raise candidate contributions to match the Club in this regard.
We will continue to praise pro-growth policies and candidates and to make life miserable for the Tom Daschles and the Arlen Specters and other Republicans in Name Only. There is a legal way to get around the 30-day and 60-day advertising restriction and that is to have the Club for Growth’s PAC pay for the advertising during the banned period.
Until now, the Club has not made a substantial effort to raise money for the Club’s PAC. We didn’t need to. But now with the first primary elections barely 30 days away, we will place a new emphasis on building a war chest in our PAC so we can continue to praise or criticize candidates for their policies that would either help or harm our nation.
We are also consulting legal experts to determine whether we can or should reorganize the Club’s charter to regain our full free speech rights.
Any member of your family can contribute to the Club’s PAC. You and any member of your family are allowed to donate up to $5,000 each and every year to the Club for Growth PAC.
A husband and wife are allowed to donate as much as $10,000 using one check, if the check is drawn on a joint account and both spouses either sign the check or a note with the check indicating it is a joint contribution.
While contributions to the Club’s PAC are limited by law, remember that you can continue to write a check for any amount to the Club for Growth. Donations to the Club don’t count against any limits on contributions to PACs, parties or candidates. We can use these unlimited funds to find new members who can give money to our PAC and candidates, as well as for advertising prior to the 30-day primary and 60-day general election ban. Of course, contributions to the Club’s PAC are not tax deductible.
We will not be muzzled by the McCain-Feingold law.
Thank you for all your wonderful support this year. Best wishes for the Holidays and a Happy New Year!