Friday, March 18, 2005

Harry Reid does something good

Kudos to Democratic Senator Harry Reid for authoring an amendment to the execrable McCain-Feingold Campaign Finance Reform Act that Pres. Bush, in his worst moment to date, signed. The amendment is simple: Internet communications will not be included in this definition (2 U.S.C. sec. 431(22)):
Public communication. - The term ''public communication'' means a communication by means of any broadcast, cable, or satellite communication, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, mass mailing, or telephone bank to the general public, or any other form of general public political advertising.

Reid's bill would exempt Internet communications from the restrictions on public communications under the McCain-Feingold Free Speech Sucks And We Don't Want Any Act. I discussed the implications of a judicial decision that struck down the FEC's exempting of the Internet two weeks ago. Reid also signalled to the Federal Elections Commission that regulations of Internet speech would be ill-received in Congress. When I have time, I'll check to see how important Reid's signal is -- some regulatory agencies can have their regulations struck down by Congress through a procedural device known as the "legislative veto" (see here for some background).

HT: El Capitan.

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