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House Democrats reportedly passed a gigantic so-called “voting rights” bill Thursday that’s a combination of H.R. 1, the so-called “For The People Act,” and H.R. 4, the so-called “John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.”
While the combined bill contains a litany of troubling provisions, “the most egregious” provision is one that institutes the “public financing of campaigns,” according to Rep. Kat Cammack, a Republican.
In a Facebook video posted right after she and every other House Republican voted down the bill, she warned that “because the way this bill is written, you and I, we are on the hook for a 6-to-1 match for donations to politicians that are $200 or less.”
To put this in perspective, she noted that far-left Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez raised $21 million during the last election, $19 million of which came from donations of $200 or less. This means, according to Cammack, that she’d have received an additional $114 million from the government had this bill been in effect at the time.
Listen to Cammack below:
🚨🚨Democrats just voted to take over our elections and finance the Squad’s re-election campaigns with YOUR money! 🚨🚨
Here’s what’s going on in DC and what you can do about it!
Posted by Kat Cammack on Thursday, January 13, 2022
Congressional Republicans have been raising concerns about this aspect of H.R., 1, which is where the provision originated, since at least 2019.
At the time, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy warned, “The bill sends your taxpayer dollars to fund political campaigns. Not to build roads or bridges but to add 600 percent of taxpayer money to every small dollar donated by Americans. So let’s say Mary from Michigan donates $200 to her preferred candidate. Well, now you — the taxpayer — have just chipped in another 1,200 bucks.”
In response, The Washington Post “fact-checked” him. In the supposed “fact-check,” the Post first defended the measure by claiming it was designed “to minimize the impact of big donors and super PACs.”
In other words, instead of allowing Americans to voluntarily donate money to the super PACs of their choice, Democrats would prefer that they in effect be forced to donate money through the government.
And indeed, in the “fact-check” the Post openly admitted that H.R. 1 would force the federal government to “provide a 6-to-1 match for donations of $200 or less” to politicians.
But the Post then claimed that this money wouldn’t be taken from taxpayers.
“The money for the matching donations would come from a 2.75 percent fee assessed on civil and criminal financial penalties with the government, which then would be earmarked for a ‘Freedom From Influence Fund,'” the outlet reported.
But what happens if the fund runs out of money?
“Fines will not be close enough to cover the 600 percent match rate. Since there will be an anticipated funding gap, the remaining funds for campaigns would come from general funds (also known as taxpayer dollars),” McCarthy’s spokesperson noted at the time.
The Post pushed back by pointing to a stipulation in the bill that explicitly stated that in instances where “there are insufficient moneys in the Fund to make payments to participating candidates … moneys shall not be made available from any other source for the purpose of making such payments.”
The combo bill passed Thursday, the “Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act,” appears to contain this stipulation as well:
Assuming this stipulation is accurate, then technically, funding for the program wouldn’t come from taxpayers. But it would still come from the public, and that, according to numerous Republicans, is in itself an issue.
“Who on earth thinks we don’t have enough money in politics? Nobody, yet House Democrats are pushing H.R. 1, a bill that would explode the amount of money spent on campaigns. And worse yet, they’d do so with public dollars,” Rep. Herrera Beutler, a Republican, said back in 2019.
“When I ask people about how government should best spend the public’s money, some say they want more to go to schools. Some say our military. Some say research for curing diseases. Never once, in my entire life, have I had someone say to me ‘I’d like the government to send money to political consultants to pay for more TV campaign ads.’ But that’s exactly what this bill does.”
She wasn’t wrong and, indeed, you won’t find a single establishment media “fact-check” disputing her remarks.
There have also been no “fact-checks” of what Sen. Chuck Grassley tweeted below, which is that Democrats are seeking to pass this troubling bill by changing the rules of the Senate.
Democrats want 2violate senate rules to change the rules so they can pass so-called “voting rights” bill That bill provides federal match for small $ donations 2candidates for US House So ur dollars cld help fund a candidate u dont support Dont need fed govt taking over elections
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) January 12, 2022
The bill’s staunchest supporter is House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who’s already in hot water over her refusal to stop trading stocks.
Editor’s Note: The original headline, which said “taxpayer funds” has been corrected to say “public funds,” for clarity. The funds are public dollars, not to be confused with “taxpayer funds.” (10:40 1-14-22)
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