The Star Chamber

Over this past nine months, conservative groups have railed against the Lightworker’s Administration’s abuse of the IRS to suppress conservative political activity.

Of course, if you live in Minnesota, you’re used to this.  The “Campaign Finance Board” has been a cudgel used against (mostly conservative) grassroots groups since its inception.

But the Dayton Administration is doing its best to make things worse:

As we’ve learned, the IRS under the Obama Administration has been weaponized against conservative non-profits in an effort to stifle opposition speech, but that’s not the only avenue of attack. A partisan bill was introduced in the Minnesota Legislature, but ultimately defeated last year that would impose onerous new regulations on grassroots organizations like Minnesota Majority, Tea Party groups and numerous other non-profits

It’s back this year and it contains all manner of vague, subjective language (like “clearly;” “reasonable;” and “biased,” that will allow a small 6-member board, appointed by the governor to determine who has violated the proposed new campaign finance laws and who has not. “Bias” is often in the eye of the beholder. In this case, it’s up to the governor to determine who the “beholders” are.

The bills involved appear to revive some of the worst, dumbest, most turn-free-speech-into-crime-ifying aspects of the late, unlamented McCain-Feingold law:

HF1944/SF1915 proposes to create “free speech zones” on the calendar, allowing the state to determine when grassroots groups can engage in unfettered speech and when such speech would be regulated.

In other words, putting bureaucrats in charge of when and, inevitably, how you may “speak freely”.

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