|Shays-Meehan "campaign finance reform"
restrictions on free speech about politicians
House Roll Call No. 379
105th Congress, 2nd Session
Agreed to: 237-186 (see complete tally)
|In August, 1998, the House approved a so-called "campaign finance reform" bill, sponsored by pro-abortion Reps. Chris Shays (R-Ct.) and Martin Meehan (D-Mass.), that would have placed sweeping restrictions on free speech about federal politicians. The Shays-Meehan bill (very similar to the McCain-Feingold bill in the Senate) contained numerous restrictions on the right of citizen groups, such as NRLC and NRLC affiliates, to communicate with the public regarding the|
votes and positions of those who hold or seek federal office -- and even regarding upcoming votes in Congress. For example, one provision would have made it unlawful for any group (other than a federal political action committee, or PAC) to even mention the
name of a member of Congress or candidate for Congress, in a broadcast communication to the public, for 60 days before a primary or general election. Other provisions would have placed groups at legal risk every time they express approval or disapproval of a politician's position in a manner that could
be interpreted as "support for" or "opposition to" that politician. On this roll call, the House gave initial approval to the Shays-Meehan measure, 237-186, by adopting it in preference to a less-sweeping alternative (House roll call no. 379, August 3, 1998).
|Vote Map: House Roll Call No. 379|
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