MORE clear explanation regarding SB1005 from Congressional Candidate for Republican Nomination, Bob Hendry:
the bill summary, paragraph (6) and subparagraphs (a) and (b) read as follows:
(6) Revises provisions governing being designated as a political campaign committee for reporting purposes. Under present law, a corporation that uses corporate funds, moneys or credits for communications expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate which funds, moneys or credits are not used with the cooperation or with the prior consent of, or in consultation with, or at the request of, or suggestion of, a candidate or any agent or authorized committee of the candidate is considered a political campaign committee for purposes of reporting such expenditures. This amendment adds that 501(c)(4) tax-exempt organization will be deemed to be a political campaign committee for purposes of reporting expenditures and filing an appointment of treasurer form if: (A) The organization expends an aggregate total of at least $5,000 in organizational funds, moneys, or credits for communications that expressly contain the name or visually depict the likeness of a state or local candidate in a primary or general election; and (B) Such expenditures or communications occur within 60 calendar days immediately preceding a primary or general election in which the named or visually depicted candidate appears on the ballot;
Some thoughts -
1. Aside from representing an attempt to stifle free speech through bureaucratic processes such as registration, fees, etc., the law is written in such a manner as to allow the worst-case interpretation for prosecution against an organization.
Coupling the elements of subparagraphs (a) and (b) yields the following possibilities: (a) - the $5000 is an aggregate amount - which taken at face value as written in the law, applies no date requirement - meaning it could be an aggregate amount from the time the organization was founded - because it does not specify "during any single election cycle." This leaves the interpretation of the requirement too open-ended. (b) - the phrase "expenditures or communications occur within 60 calendar days..." allows for application of expenditures or communications which were sent at any time. The conjunction "or" creates a logic stream which allows either expenditures or communications to occur outside the 60 day window, too. It's either intentionally vague, or damned sloppy writing.
2. Timeline this out. This law allows 501c(4)s 11 days to communicate with constituents between each election. Applying the 60-day windows prior to the 2022 election cycle would look like this:
These bills infringe on 1st Amendment rights and create an environment hostile to voters and special interest groups.