GOP senators avoid co-sponsoring campaign finance reform legislation

By Susan Crabtree, The Hill

Senate Democrats have been unable to find a GOP co-sponsor of highly anticipated campaign finance reform legislation, delaying the rollout of a measure aimed at counteracting a landmark Supreme Court ruling.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) had expected to unveil their legislation with bipartisan support by the end of last week, with a goal of delivering a bill to President Barack Obama’s desk by July 4 so that it would have an immediate impact in this year’s elections.

That timeframe is in doubt, and the lack of GOP support could prevent passage of legislation through either chamber by Memorial Day.

Democrats now hope to unveil legislation this week, and the party is in an internal debate over whether to move forward without a Republican co-sponsor.

The difficulty Democrats have found in winning GOP support for campaign finance reform, an issue that has attracted Republicans in the past, reflects the highly partisan atmosphere in Congress, which has only intensified since the healthcare debate.

Republicans supportive of the Citizens United decision, which would allow unlimited corporate and union spending on individual campaigns, have attacked the Democratic effort as politically motivated, noting that the chief sponsors are Van Hollen, the current chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and Schumer, the former head of the Democratic Senate campaign arm.

To read more, visit: http://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/93175-gop-sponsors-elude-campaign-finance-bill

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