In January 2007, Sen. Russ Feingold introduced the Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act—S. 223—to require Senate campaigns to file their campaign finance reports electronically. The bill is supported by both Republicans and Democrats and has a total of 45 co-sponsors.
Currently, Senate reports are filed in paper format, increasing the amount of time for the information to be digitized and made available to the public through the Federal Election Commission's Web site. Candidates for both the House of Representatives and the presidency file electronically, making the information disclosed in their reports publicly available in a faster, more efficient manner than Senate reports.
By passing S. 223, the Senate would come into the modern era of disclosure and public access to campaign finance information would increase. It would seem that the passage of this bipartisan, “no-brainer” bill would be assured. However, the bill has been stalled, blocked and shut down by a variety of opponents for over a year and a half.
At this moment, Sen. John Ensign, who insists on adding an unnecessary, poison pill amendment, is blocking the bill. The amendment proposed by Sen. Ensign would reduce accountability by requiring outside groups filing ethics complaints to reveal their sources of funding. This provision would constitute an unconstitutional burden on charities, religious bodies and non-profits attempting to ensure the operation of an honest and clean government.
To strengthen campaign finance disclosure, the Senate must vote against the Ensign amendment and then vote to pass S. 223. We need your help in identifying where senators stand on both the bill itself and the Ensign amendment.
On this site's homepage, you will find a chart where you can find your senators and instructions, including a script, for how to call your senators. Please don't forget to report back to us and let us know what you learned. We'll post your findings here so that others can track our progress. Once we've verified the information with your senator's office, we'll update the chart.
Pass 223 is a joint project of the Sunlight Foundation, Public Citizen, Center for Responsive Politics, Campaign Finance Institute, Public Campaign, Change Congress and Open the Government. This Initiative and Website is kept alive and powered by de burna.com | eCommerce Consulting.