UPDATE: A Politico article today titled, “How Dems’ NRA loophold backfired” is reporting that the Disclose Act has been temporarily pulled (the vote was expected today) because they don’t have the votes. Keep up the pressure. They are trying to reorganize only to try another day.
We have been warning you this week that the Disclosure Act will significantly impact the ability of the tea party to engage in free speech during campaigns and elections. What is even more sickening is that the NRA and the Unions (interesting partners) have worked out a deal with House Democrats to make sure they are exempt, while leaving the rest of us flapping in the wind.
What is the most troubling about all of this? We DON”T GET OUR RIGHT OF FREE SPEECH FROM THE GOVERNMENT! The Bill of Rights simply affirms our God-given rights (not government-given rights) to make sure the government knows their boundaries. Patrick Henry insisted on a Bill of Rights because he knew government’s historical proclivity to abridge rights in order to amass and secure power.
Many of us are sorely disappointed in the actions of the NRA to protect the interest of their organization (not their members mind you) to the harm of all of us. We need their strong lobbying to fight this pseudo Alien and Sedition Act, but they are busy cutting lobbying deals. With that in mind, many kudos goes to Cleta Mitchell, who sits on the Board of the NRA and has decided to speak out against the actions of the NRA in this Washington Post column:
The NRA “carve-out” reaffirms the wisdom of the First Amendment’s precise language: “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech.”
Congress can’t help itself. Since 1798, with the Alien and Sedition Acts, incumbent politicians have yearned for legal duct tape for their opponents’ mouths. The Disclose Act is a doozy of a muzzle.
For its part, the NRA — on whose board of directors I serve — rather than holding steadfastly to its historic principles of defending the Constitution and continuing its noble fight against government regulation of political speech instead opted for a political deal borne of self-interest in exchange for “neutrality” from the legislation’s requirements. In doing so, the NRA has, sadly, affirmed the notion held by congressional Democrats (and some Republicans), liberal activists, the media establishment and, at least for now, a minority on the Supreme Court that First Amendment protections are subject to negotiation. The Second Amendment surely cannot be far behind.
Since the court’s January decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that corporations cannot be constitutionally prohibited from making independent candidate-related expenditures, Democrats have been hyperventilating at the notion that corporations might spend millions of dollars criticizing them. To foreclose that possibility, the Disclose Act would impose onerous and complicated “disclosure” restrictions on organizations that dare to engage in constitutionally protected political speech and on corporations that dare to contribute to such organizations.
If you are a NRA member, we encourage you to contact the NRA and let them know you are not happy with the deal making that just exchanged your free speech for their lobbying power. At this time in history, the Tea Party movement is the only thing keeping the pressure on Congress. Don’t let the voice of the people be silenced.
We need you to contact your congressman and senator and tell them to vote NO against the DISCLOSE Act. There is no time to waste on something as important as free speech. Make the calls now!!