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Sat Dec 21, 2013, 04:22 PM

How Washington starves its election watchdog - Center for Public Integrity [View all]

(emphasis my own_Bill USA)

Bitter ideological warfare among commissioners [font size="+1"]and congressionaland White House indifference[/font] have yielded an agency less able to fulfill its stated mission: to “prevent corruption in the federal campaign process by administering, enforcing and formulating policy.”

Two newly minted commissioners, Republican Lee Goodman and Democrat Ann Ravel, have pledged to find common ground and work to strengthen the FEC’s standing. Odds are that they’ll lead the agency next year as chairman and vice chairman. The other commissioners talk of the agency reasserting itself after months when the six-member commission operated with only four or five slots filled.

But plenty of folks don’t believe them. The roots of the agency’s dysfunction remain in place, reformers and some former commissioners argue. Only wholesale reforms, they say, could pull the FEC from plunging into irrelevancy.

“The commission just seems to look inward and almost wonder aloud if a decision has an ideological impact, and if so, they shy away from it,” said Frank P. Reiche, a Republican who served as an FEC commissioner from 1979 to 1985. “It’s sad — very sad — and the agency is almost doomed to failure for carrying out its statutory mission unless reform measures are implemented and adopted by Congress.”

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Bill USA Dec 2013 OP
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