DISCLOSE Act Silences Speech

Jun 10, 2010, 15:00 ET from Americans for Tax Reform

Broad Coalition Opposes Targeted Attack on First Amendment

WASHINGTON, June 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, Americans for Tax Reform, accompanied by over fifty other groups, sent a letter to the United States House of Representatives urging members to oppose H.R. 5175, the DISCLOSE Act. These groups ask Congress to reject this bill on behalf of millions of taxpayers and concerned citizens whose rights to free speech are significantly threatened by the DISCLOSE Act. The coalition wrote:

H.R. 5175 is being sold to the public as a "response" to the Supreme Court's ruling in Citizens United v. FEC. However, this bill uses the ruling as an excuse to expand the scope of campaign finance regulations to strangle free speech.

The bill shifts the regulatory paradigm away from those who are actually funding advertisements and targets, for the first time, individual membership in a group. This inclusive treatment of organizational funding reveals that the intent of this legislation is not true disclosure – it is the intimidation of speech. It also marks a stark departure from the traditional treatment of corporations and unions by applying punitive measures to associations in the corporate form, but not to labor unions, even though these groups have traditionally been treated similarly in campaign finance law.

The DISCLOSE Act, while cleverly named, aims to silence political speech by intimidation and onerous regulation. Such efforts should be rejected swiftly. Thus, on behalf of the millions of Americans we represent, we urge you to reject this assault on free speech and to vote against H.R. 5175.

The letter in its entirety can be found here.

The full list of signatories is as follows:

60 Plus Association

American Conservative Union

American Council for Health Care Reform

Americans for Limited Government

Americans for Tax Reform

American Grassroots Coalition

American Target Advertising, Inc.

Business Coalition for Fair Competition


Center for Individual Freedom

Center-Right Coalition of Florida

Citizen Link, Tom Minnery

Citizens for Limited Taxation (MA)

Citizens United

ClearWord Communications Group

Coalition for a Fair Judiciary

Center for Competitive Politics

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Committee for Justice

Concerned Women for America

ConservativeHQ.com, Inc.

Council for America

Council for Citizens Against Government Waste

Eagle Forum

Faith and Freedom Coalition

Family Research Council Action

Freedom Action

Free Speech Coalition

Gun Owners of America

Hispanic Leadership Fund

Home School Legal Defense Association

Let Freedom Ring

Liberty Counsel, Mathew Staver

Liberty Guard, Bob Barr, Chairman and Joe Seehusen

Management Association for Private Photogrammetric Surveyors (MAPPS)

Maryland Center-Right Coalition

Morgan, Meredith & Associates

National Right to Life Committee

National Tax Limitation Committee

National Taxpayers Union

NetworkGeorgia LLC

Pioneer Institute

Property Rights Alliance

Renewing American Leadership-Action

Republican National Lawyers Association



Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council

Smart Business Hawaii, Samuel M. Slom

Students for Life of America

Tea Party Express

Tea Party WDC

The American Civil Rights Union

Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.

Traditional Values Coalition

Americans for Tax Reform is a non-partisan coalition of taxpayers and taxpayer groups who oppose all tax increases.

For more information or to arrange an interview please contact John Kartch at (202) 785-0266 or by email at jkartch@atr.org.

SOURCE Americans for Tax Reform