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Obama Puts the ‘Dis’ into ‘Disclosure’

October 13, 2010

The Wall Street Journal today tells the story of what happens when the Left’s cry for disclosure of political donations is heeded:

[C]onsider what happened to Target Corp. when it exercised its First Amendment rights in Minnesota.

In July, the superstore retailer based in Minneapolis donated $150,000 to an independent group called MN Forward, which used the funds to support the primary candidacy of Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer. Consistent with Target’s interest, the donation helped pay for an ad highlighting Mr. Emmer’s positions on taxes and spending, issues relevant to the state’s business climate. Because Mr. Emmer was also a critic of gay marriage, however, within weeks the retailer found itself on the national left’s political hit list. led the attack, organizing a petition and crafting a TV ad telling shoppers to boycott the chain. Soliciting donations to the anti-Target crusade, MoveOn warned that “Target became one of the first corporations to take advantage of the Citizens United decision when it donated to a far-right candidate for governor in Minnesota.” It added, “If we don’t fight back, this will be just the tip of the iceberg.” Citizen’s United is the January Supreme Court decision that said unions and companies can donate to independent political groups, which is what Target did.

The fact that Target had “received a 100% score on Human Rights Campaign’s 2010 Corporate Equality Index, which rates companies on sexual preference policies in the workplace” didn’t save them.

The Obama administration’s current pathetic attack against the US Chamber of Commerce also includes the dishonest demand for “merely” disclosing the organisation’s list of donors. The allegation that the Chamber is using foreign money to pay for political ads was first raised on some super-left blog (all of which aren’t exactly known for their fact-abidance). And it’s so baseless that pundits of every political stripe are scratching their heads over why the White House felt it was a good idea to take it up. It’s the equivalent of demanding that Sarah Palin give proof of her youngest son being actually her child.

Most explain the Obama administration’s foolish decision to go with this silly charge as a sign of desperation in face of the conservative tidal wave that’s announcing itself for this November. But there must be at least one other aspect to it. Because believing that this line of attack is going to do more good than harm to Democrats and the Obama administration means that you must have a pretty low opinion of voters’ understanding of politics. Obviously, Obama and Co think that it’s enough to throw dust into the air for voters to believe that the Obama administration’s Villain of the Day has something evil to hide.

And all of this is without even beginning to bring up the issue of the negligent fashion in which the Obama presidential campaign handled donations, any number of which could’ve come from abroad.

Here’s the US Chamber of Commerce Executive VP commenting on the issue and also making the same argument as the WSJ story about the real aim behind the complaints (via Hotair):

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