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Well that’s good - it’s not like there’s an election coming up or anything

fec.jpgSo get this — on January 1, the Federal Election Commission will basically shut down, at least in terms of making big decisions. The FEC has six committee members, normally. Right now, there are only five, and three of them have recess appointments that end next week. Which leaves the FEC with just two members. And since the Commission needs four commissioner votes to take any official action, it’s at least two members shy. So, until it gets some more members, no votey votey.

And the problem is that there’s a nice political hoo-ha going on in Congress regarding Bush nominees, and the partisan hackery has led to no progress in getting some replacement commissioners.

“There is, in effect, nobody to answer the phone,” said Robert F. Bauer, a leading Democratic campaign finance lawyer.

What sort of roadblocks could this cause?

Seven presidential candidates have applied to receive public matching funds for their campaigns, but they may not be able to access the money until the FEC certifies their requests. That takes four votes.
The national political parties each anticipate an infusion of about $1 million from the U.S. Treasury to help pay for their national conventions. Releasing that money takes four votes.
And then there is a range of vexing campaign finance questions that hang in limbo: Can a firm that operates a blimp accept unlimited contributions to fly it over New Hampshire with Ron Paul’s name on the side? Can a senator use his campaign account as a legal defense fund? How will campaigns comply with the new law that requires them to identify the lobbyists who are collecting campaign checks on their behalf?

So no big deal really. Good thing primaries for a Presidential election don’t start moments after the FEC has its ability to do anything cut off. That would be a real bummer.

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Comments

Let's be crystal clear about this. If Bush, aka, "The dick we got for a president" would have submitted passable candidates to the senate, we would have a full slate of commissioners now. As it stands, the Senate had to stay in session over the holidays to prevent him from more of this sort of chicanery.

Did I mention he's a dick?