FEC to Regulate Bloggers, Redux
Mike Krempasky and Kevin Aylward have reports on yesterday’s FEC hearings on the issue of how campaign finance laws such as McCain-Feingold relate to bloggers. The much poo-poo’d warnings of FEC Commissioner Bradley Smith appear to have been spot on.
The bottom line is that blogs with few readers–which is to say, almost all blogs–appear to be safe while the most popular blogs, especially popular group blogs, are in a grey zone with the parameters yet to be set forth.
Krempasky has a PDF copy of the first draft of the law, which was actually much more restrictive than even Smith’s nightmare scenario. Fortunately, because Smith sounded the alarm and a lot of bloggers thereby got wind up what was happening before it became finalized, the current version is much tamer. Still, the idea that a personal website, uncoordinated with any candidate’s campaign, could be considered a political contribution simply because of opinions expressed on it, is as frightening as it is absurd.