SC House Seeks To Suppress Political Speech
“DON’T SPEAK …”
Members of the S.C. House of Representatives say they want real “ethics reform” this year.
We’ll believe that when we see it …
South Carolina is home to the least ethical state government in America, people … and under the “Republican” rule of Gov. Nikki Haley, House Speaker Bobby Harrell and S.C. Senate finance chairman Hugh Leatherman things have gotten worse, not better.
And we’re supposed to believe these people are going to start effectively policing themselves?
Yeah … as if.
Anyway, as part of the House’s big “ethics reform” push this year, members are trying to sneak in a provision that would ban certain types of political speech – including legitimate criticism of their self-serving corruption. Specifically, they are hoping to force independent expenditure groups to disclose their donors – while broadly expanding the definition of “political speech” itself.
According to one section of the proposed ethics law, “any person making an electioneering communication within (thirty) days before an election must file a report detailing the communication with the State Ethics Commission within (forty-eight) hours.”
The new law would seek to define “electioneering communication” as any sort of “mass communication.” It specifically references television commercials or postal mailings as examples – but clearly the term “mass communication” is open to interpretation. Maybe a mass email fits the bill? Maybe a guy standing on a street corner with a megaphone?
Bottom line is it’s up to them to decide if your views should be regulated …
We object to this deliberately vague language – which is clearly more about shielding elected officials from criticism than it is promoting “transparency” in politics.