POLITICS
05/11/2012 05:31 pm ET Updated May 11, 2012

HUFFPOST FUNDRACE -- Against Donor Transparency

The Wall Street Journal hosts an argument against transparency for campaign donors and donors to super PACs. Kim Strassel makes a case that linking donors to the candidates they support and criticizing those donors is out-of-bounds, "Three weeks ago, an Obama campaign website, 'Keeping GOP Honest,' took the extraordinary step of publicly naming and assailing eight private citizens backing Mr. Romney. Titled 'Behind the curtain: a brief history of Romney's donors,' the post accused the eight of being 'wealthy individuals with less-than-reputable records.' [Frank] VanderSloot was one of the eight, smeared particularly as being 'litigious, combative and a bitter foe of the gay rights movement.' ...Political donations don't come with a right to privacy, and Mr. VanderSloot might have expected a spotlight. Then again, President Obama, in the wake of the Gabby Giffords shooting, gave a national address calling for "civility" in politics. Yet rather than condemn those demeaning his opponent's donors, Mr. Obama—the nation's most powerful man—instead publicly named individuals, egging on the attacks. What has followed is the slimy trolling into a citizen's private life."

That George Clooney-Obama fundraiser did in fact raise $15 million with $6 million coming from the actual attendees and another $9 million coming from donors competing to win a seat at the dinner. The campaign said that the average donation for those competing in the contest was $23.

Politico notes that the ads made by the pro-Howard Berman super PAC, Committee To Elect An Effective Valley Congressman, are really, really bad.

The Federal Election Commission failed to reach a conclusion on whether Sen. Dianne Feinstein can re-solicit donors whose contributions were stolen by her former treasurer.

A mini-super PAC has popped up in California's 31st district to back Democrat Paul Aguilar as he faces Rep. Gary Miller in a redrawn district. Miller has received big support in recent days from the National Association of Realtors.

What's appearing in a lot of ads these days? Calls for voters to vote against big money and proclaim that their state or district, "Not For Sale."

AD WATCH

Help us populate our list of campaign videos. Send any notable TV, radio or web ads that you see to Fundrace. Send your submissions to paulblumenthal@huffingtonpost.com.

Committee: American Bridge 21st Century
Candidate Opposed: Mitt Romney
Spot: "Mitt Gets Worse"
Market: YouTube.
Buy: None. Just a web video.

Committee: Republican National Committee
Candidate Opposed: Barack Obama
Spot: "Forgetting the Recession?"
Market: YouTube.
Buy: None. Just a web video.

Committee: Joe Donnelly for Senate
Candidate Opposed: Richard Mourdock
Spot: "Attacks"
Market: YouTube.
Buy: None. Just a web video.

Committee: Planned Parenthood Votes
Candidate Opposed: Dennis Rehberg
Spot: "Women's Health -- Dennis Rehberg 'Doesn't Get It'"
Market: Montana.
Buy: Undisclosed.

Committee: Texas Conservatives Fund
Candidate Opposed: Ted Cruz
Spot: "Ted Cruz A Conservative? No Way'"
Market: Texas.
Buy: Undisclosed.

Committee: David Dewhurst for Senate
Spot: "Dewhurst: From Texas To Utah Beach'"
Market: YouTube.
Buy: None. Just a web video.

Committee: Linda McMahon for Senate
Spot: "Happy Mother's Day'"
Market: YouTube.
Buy: None. Just a web video.

Committee: Committee To Elect An Effective Valley Congressman
Candidate Supported: Howard Berman
Spot: "Howard Berman: Man On The Street'"
Market: California's 30th District.
Buy: Undisclosed.

Committee: National Republican Congressional Committee
Candidate Opposed: Ron Barber
Spot: "Ron Barber - Arizona Impact'"
Market: Arizona's 8th District.
Buy: ~$18,750.

Committee: U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Candidate Opposed: Louise Slaughter
Spot: "Louise Slaughter has fought for the continued overreach by the federal government"
Market: New York's 25th District.
Buy: Undisclosed.

Committee: Scott Walker for Governor
Candidate Opposed: Tom Barrett
Spot: "Blame"
Market: Wisconsin.
Buy: Undisclosed.

Committee: Tom Barrett for Governor
Candidate Opposed: Scott Walker
Spot: "Scott Walker says he wants to "divide and conquer" Wisconsin"
Market: Wisconsin.
Buy: Undisclosed.

TRACKING INDEPENDENT SPENDING IN THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE:

These numbers represent spending by independent groups, like super PACs and non-profits, to support or oppose a particular candidate for the presidency in 2012. Fundrace will update this spending daily to help show which candidates are gaining from the proliferation of independent groups in this coming election.

Newt Gingrich (R), $13,017,772 to support, $18,885,161 to oppose.
Rick Santorum (R), $7,548,235 to support, $20,923,379 to oppose.
Mitt Romney (R), $5,361,828 to support, $8,676,753 to oppose.
Rick Perry (R), $4,167,697 to support, $1,404 to oppose.
Ron Paul (R), $3,748,218 to support, $214,158 to oppose.
Jon Huntsman (R), $2,453,204 to support, $0 to oppose.
Barack Obama (D), $455,569 to support, $1,220,956 to oppose. (+$156,713)
Herman Cain (R), $501,717 to support, $954 to oppose.
Gary Johnson (R), $518 to support, $0 to oppose.

RECENT INDEPENDENT EXPENDITURES

Our Country Deserves Better PAC --- TeaPartyExpress.org, $8,065 to support Ted Cruz for Senate in Texas.
Restoring Our Community, $48,196 to support Paul Aguilar for Congress in California's 31st District.
American Dental Association Independent Expenditures Committee, $27,516 to support Mike Simpson for Congress in Idaho's 2nd District.
National Republican Congressional Committee, $18,750 to oppose Ron Barber for Congress in Arizona's 8th District.
Club for Growth PAC, $2,340 to support Thomas Massie for Congress in Kentucky's 4th District.
United Food & Commercial Workers International Union Active Ballot Club, $156,713 to support Barack Obama for President.
Committee To Elect An Effective Valley Congressman, $11,620 to support Howard Berman for Congress in California's 30th District.
Conservative Renewal PAC, $125,000 to support David Dewhurst for Senate in Texas.
Conservative Renewal PAC, $47,500 to oppose Tom Leppert for Senate in Texas.
Jobs Opportunity And Freedom PAC, $2,134 to support Gary Miller for Congress in California's 31st District.
Jobs Opportunity And Freedom PAC, $7,246 to support Brad Mitzelfelt for Congress in California's 8th District.
National Association of Realtors Congressional Fund, $29,702 to support Gary Miller for Congress in California's 31st District.

RECENT POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE REGISTRATIONS

NONE.

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