In a unique Michigan quirk, the state’s campaign finance law predates the term limit law, and therefore “does not clearly allow for fundraising by lawmakers who can’t be re-elected,” according to Egan. A 1978 ruling by the Secretary of State sets precedent for a “fundraising event” to exclude anything that does not raise proceeds to influence elections, but there remains no explicit fundraising prohibition. In addition to the hazy legal ground, checks on state politicians are inadequate because the Bureau of Elections is understaffed and unable to scrutinize the thousands of campaign finance reports that it receives, Robinson said (and the director of the state’s Bureau of Elections didn’t dispute). Given this, the spotlight from the Detroit Free Press shines all the brighter.
United States Project
11:00 AM - July 3, 2012
Why are lame ducks still raising campaign funds?
The Detroit Free Press takes a look at the books of 22 state lawmakers
Q&A: An Apple critic with plenty to say - John Siracusa’s legendary - and lengthy - Apple reviews reach their 15th year
Why one editor won’t run any more op-eds by the Heritage Foundation’s top economist - A reply to Paul Krugman on state taxes and job growth made some incorrect claims
4 topics John Oliver explained more clearly than television news - The political satirist brings explainer comedy to HBO viewers
Michael Brown shooting and the crimes journalists choose as newsworthy - Examining why black suspects are covered at a greater proportion than they commit crimes
GOP-backed fake news sites target Dems in congressional races - - Unlike The Onion and other satire sites, the goal is to fool voters, not make them laugh
Email blasts from CJR writers and editors
The departure of Katharine Weymouth ends eight decades of Graham family leadership
“[E]xecutions, even for people who support capital punishment, and even when the criminals being put to death evoke little personal sympathy because of the nature of their crimes, take a toll on witnesses”
The company will possess log-in information and will be free to post any material to the account without journalists’ knowledge
“People who say reporters exploit people? You are right, we do. We parachute into people’s lives, sidle up, convince them that we care — and then disengage when the story is over. But that doesn’t mean we don’t connect, in a genuine way.”
Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute
Who Owns What
A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Questions and exercises for journalism students.