Thursday, October 30, 2014

Texas "Ethics" Commission invents donor intimidation rules

"For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life."
Galatians 6:8

Nothing like quietly acting while folks are concentrating on early voting to bolster public confidence in your case:
Earlier today the Texas Ethics Commission gave itself broad new powers to dig into the finances of organizations critical of elected officials and to unconstitutionally expose donors to intimidation and harassment. And they are doing so in direct violation of Supreme Court rulings.

Despite a gubernatorial veto last year, the opposition of two-thirds of the state senate and the majority of the House Republican caucus, the Texas Ethics Commission has moved forward with unconstitutional rules that they were specifically warned against implementing by six incoming state senators.

At today’s hearing, commissioners were warned by David Keating, a constitutional law expert who heads the Center for Competitive Politics, that this action defies current Supreme Court precedent.


Relying on their redefinition of the word “a,” the TEC is putting itself and the state on a collision course with costly lawsuits. That the TEC is now claiming this power was theirs all along should be enough to raise eyebrows. Legislation was introduced last legislative session to do what commissioners now say they had the power to do all along.

Put simply, the right of every Texan to support causes they believe in is under attack. Their privacy is being invaded, exposing them to harassment. The TEC is giving itself the power to silence voices of dissent through threat of legal intimidation at the hands of a state agency where citizens must prove themselves innocent.
Read the whole thing here.

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