The FEC is broken – H.R. 1 will break it differently

FLICKR/DonkeyHotey

The FEC is bad. The House of Representatives isn't doing anything to make it better.

When it passed H.R. 1 by a vote of 234-193 on Monday, Congress attempted to address a laundry list of nationwide problems: rampant gerrymandering, voting rights, and the vulnerability of elections to foreign interference, among other concerns. But H.R. 1, billed as the "For the People Act," also takes a shot at reforming the Federal Election Commission (FEC). It fails.

The FEC isn't good at enforcing the nation's campaign finance laws, and, when it is does, it's often an entire election cycle after the given offense. As it is, candidates don't have much difficulty circumventing campaign finance laws, undermining the fairness of elections and opening the door to further corruption.

RELATED: Lawmakers are putting the death penalty on trial

The FEC was created by the Federal Election Campaign Act following the Watergate scandal, as Congress sought a better way to police federal campaign laws and prevent future presidents from interfering with investigations as Nixon had. The FEC has six commissioners, and no more than three can be of the same party. Four votes are required for most actions taken by the agency, and that hasn't been an issue for most of its history. But since 2008, the frequency of 3-3 tie votes has increased dramatically. It's why the FEC is slow to investigate cases and even slower to prosecute offenses. Supporters of H.R. 1 complain, with good reason, that the FEC has become toothless. But H.R. 1's reforms introduce new and potentially volatile problems.

FEC's rampant dysfunction won't be fixed by H.R. 1— the bill doesn't get at what actually went wrong. Since its inception, the FEC has been able to operate without excessive gridlock, and, for the most part, it still does. At the height of FEC turmoil in 2014, the FEC only had a tied vote 14 percent of the time (historically, it has been closer to one to four percent of the time) on substantive matters, although many of these tie votes occur on matters that are particularly contentious. The greater problem afflicting the FEC is touched upon by NBC Washington's findings that the Republican and Democratic commissioners of the FEC almost always vote as blocs. At various times, both Republican and Democratic commissioners have put party interests ahead of their agency's responsibilities.

At various times, both Republican and Democratic commissioners have put party interests ahead of their agency's responsibilities.

H.R. 1's Democratic supporters instead believe the FEC's six-commissioner structure makes it dysfunctional. H.R. 1 introduces a new system of five commissioners —two from each party and one independent, eliminating tie votes. But that independent commissioner's de facto role as a tiebreaker would grant them far too much power. Save for Senate approval, there's nothing preventing a president from appointing an "independent" like Bernie Sanders or Angus King.

The bill's proponents are aware of this problem, creating a Blue Ribbon Advisory Panel that will help inform the president's decisions. But this panel has problems of its own. The Blue Ribbon Advisory Panel's decisions are non-binding and not public, a result of its exemption from the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), which ensures the transparency of advisory committees. There are arguments against FACA's necessity, the panel's deliberate exemption from the law undermines the idea that its goal is to ensure non-partisanship. Instead, H.R. 1 will allow future presidents to tilt the scales of the FEC in their favor, a fate the post-Watergate creators of the FEC were so desperate to avoid they originally had members of Congress picking commissioners before the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional. Apparently, the solution to excessive gridlock is one-party control.

H.R. 1 also seeks to grant unilateral powers to the Chair of the commission in the name of expediency, again giving leverage to the Chair's party, and allows the General Counsel to take actions independent of commission votes. While some of the FEC's problems, such as its notoriously slow pace and the delayed appointment of commissioners under Presidents Obama and Trump, might be solved with legislation, the consolidation of power in the hands of a few at the expense of the FEC's integrity is not a winning strategy.

The FEC is afflicted by the same problem that has afflicted governments for as long as they have existed – governments are made up of people, and people can be bad. The Founders, in their wisdom, sought to limit the harm bad actors could do once in power, and the FEC's current structure adheres to this principle. Currently, the consequences of bad actors in the FEC is dysfunction and frustration. But under H.R. 1's reforms, those consequences could be blatant corruption.

Michael Rieger is a contributor for Young Voices. Follow him on Twitter at @EagerRieger.

Almost every week, new incriminating evidence is mined from Hunter’s wild laptop. And the proof is mounting that President Joe Biden is lying about his knowledge of his family’s crooked deal-making. Everyone knows Hunter Biden is a seriously degenerate guy. Anyone who has handled his infamous laptop needs a tetanus shot.

The salacious stuff on the laptop is sad and pathetic for sure, but that stuff is NOT what is most relevant to the United States. Glenn Beck exposes how the laptop is REALLY about Joe Biden, his abuse of power as vice president, and his ongoing denials now as president.

Now that the 2020 election has passed and their man is in office, the mainstream media have suddenly decided to admit Hunter’s laptop is not Russian disinformation after all. No one has done more research into the Biden family corruption than journalist and best-selling author Peter Schweizer. He has researched the depths of Hunter’s laptop and found more than racy photos. “These aren’t HUNTER’S business deals,” Peter says, “they benefit the WHOLE family.” And he has the emails to prove it.

But the mainstream media still insist President Biden is as pure as his thinning white hair in all of this. As Glenn reveals tonight, he is not. But will anyone in the Biden family see jail time? Americans are fed up with two sets of rules – one for regular citizens and one for the ruling elites.

Watch the full episode of "Glenn TV" below:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn’s masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Rolling Stone magazine on Sunday published an article that argued in no uncertain terms that the suspect who grotesquely took the lives of ten people in Buffalo, New York, last weekend was a "mainstream Republican."

Like so many in the corporate media, the article's author Talia Lavin — who in 2018 resigned from the New Yorker after falsely accusing a combat-wounded veteran and ICE agent of having a Nazi tattoo — has painted the Buffalo killer as a right-wing, white supremacist, Tucker Carlson-worshipping conservative who is "gripped by a racist delusion."

On the radio program Tuesday, Glenn Beck revealed what the killer actually wrote in his alleged "manifesto," which proves he was far from a freedom-loving constitutionalist, and explained why blatantly ignoring his words will only make the problem worse.

"The corporate media has, from the very get-go, tried to associate [the killer] with the Republicans, to say that he's a conservative, to say that he got all of his training from Tucker Carlson," Glenn began. "But you know it's weird, in the 180-page document authored by the shooter, he doesn't mention Tucker Carlson — not even once. Not at all. There is one mention of Fox News, and it's an infographic showing the top Fox News host, such as Maria Bartiromo and Greg Gutfeld, as being Jewish. He also says Rupert Murdoch is a Christian Zionist who may have Jewish ancestry though it's never been publicly admitted," he continued.

"Oh, another thing. Ben Shapiro is mentioned multiple times, including as an example as the 'rat of the Jewish people.' So gosh, that doesn't sound conservative to me, doesn't sound Republican, doesn't sound like he's learned anything from anybody that is on the right. Moreover, he has described himself as an ethno-nationalist and eco-fascist national socialist. He loathes libertarianism and conservatism in particular."

Watch the video clip below to hear more of the criminal's own words, which prove he was no right-winger and certainly NOT a "mainstream Republican."

Can't watch? Download the podcast here or listen to the episode highlights below:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn’s masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis, and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution, and live the American dream.

A Colorado mother of three, Erin Lee, said her 12-year-old daughter was recruited by teachers to attend an "art club" after school, only to find it was a GSA or Gay Straight Awareness/Alliance Club. Not only was the family misled about the purpose of the club, but a guest speaker — who told the middle school students that "if they're not fully comfortable in their bodies, that means they're transgender" — also encouraged the kids to keep secrets from their parents.

Lee told Glenn Beck on the radio program Monday that her "shy, vulnerable, barely 12-year-old daughter" had just moved to Wellington Middle School in Fort Collins, Colorado, when she was invited by her art and home room teachers to attend an "art club" after school.

"She texted us [and] we gave her permission for art club," Lee said of her daughter. "When she got there, it was actually GSA, or Gender and Sexuality Awareness or Alliance Club. The teacher had invited in a completely unqualified outside presenter who did unthinkable things with the children. I'll give you the CliffsNotes version. She told them, 'what you hear in here, keep in here.' She used flags to use defining words, telling them if they're not fully comfortable in their bodies, that means they're transgender. Then she would hand out the flags and stickers and bracelets and other swag. She told them that 'queer' is a label for when they're still figuring out their sexuality.

"She did the 'Genderbread person,' which explicitly asked kids who they're sexually attracted to, so 11, 12, 13-year-olds with peers and adults in the room, talking about their sexuality. She handed out her personal contact information and invited them to connect on teen chat platforms, like WhatsApp and Discord, where she knows that parents are not monitoring the conversation. She told them that families may not be safe, and it's okay to lie about where they are. And in fact, the art teacher, as my daughter was leaving the room that day, pulled her aside and said, 'remember, you don't have to tell your mom.'"

The outside presenter, Kimberly Chambers, is the director of SPLASH Youth of Northern Colorado, an organization that targets children as young as 5 years old, as indicated on its own website. Chambers is a paid employee of the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment with access to children’s information, according to a Parents Defending Education incident report.

Lee went on to say that, after learning from her daughter what happened, she and her husband contacted the school principal, who confirmed that the meeting was, in fact, held in secret and they are always held in secret because as a public school they have to offer children a "safe space." Lee then turned to the school board, but said she was ignored "for months." Finally, she was able to meet with board member Kristen Draper, who turned out to be a close friend and "strong ally" to Chambers. Draper also volunteers for an arm of SPLASH called SKITTLES.

"FOIA emails showed that [the school] immediately colluded when I objected to what happened," Lee told Glenn. "They immediately colluded with the school board to keep me quiet. They referenced parents who find out as 'barriers' that the school board has removed. They talked about sending social services into my home because I didn't like what they did with my child," she continued.

"My daughter had never expressed gender dysphoria before. She never expressed that she'd had any trouble at home. They never spoke to me. I never spoke to any of the people that did these things before they decided to talk about calling CPS ... In the state of Colorado, if my child had said to the CPS that I wasn't affirming her transgender identity, I firmly believe they would have removed her from the home. And the people knew this when they suggested that CPS come to our home to remove our child," Lee warned. "Colorado is off the rails in particular, but this is happening everywhere."

Watch the video clip below for more details:

Can't watch? Download the podcast here or listen to the episode highlights below:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn’s masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis, and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution, and live the American dream.

The House approved a new aid package for Ukraine of nearly $40 billion, which will increase the total U.S. funding for Ukraine's war efforts to a whopping $58 BILLION since March, if the package passes in the Senate. Meanwhile, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testified before Congress that the Biden administration is considering diverting resources away from an already-struggling VA (Department of Veterans Affairs) to deal with the border crisis.

"I am not making this up -- this will [make] your head explode," Glenn Beck said in the radio program Thursday. "They are going to divert costs; the Biden administration is taking money from the VA. Now already, our veterans get seconds, and we are [considering] diverting VA funding, and doctors, and nurses, away from our vets and to the migrants at the border, so we can take money that we don't have, $58 billion, and send it to Ukraine. What the hell is wrong with us?"

"Now, some Republican lawmakers are attempting to fight this," he added. "But, most people haven't even heard of this. This is how the atrocities at the border go unchecked. Biden sweeps it all under a rug. The mainstream media covers it up. And, meanwhile, people suffer and die. And in this case, it's not only the people on the border, but it is also our veterans in VA hospitals."

Glenn went on to detail the unreported deadly consequences of Biden’s border policies which have led to enough fentanyl to kill millions of Americans pouring across the border and terrorists having found easy paths into our country.

Watch the video clip below to hear more from Glenn:

Can't watch? Download the podcast here or listen to the episode highlights below:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn’s masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution, and live the American dream.