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Kurt Browning wants lawmakers to clear up campaign finance mess

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Gary Fineout reports: While there is a lot of talk about the veto of SB 6, don’t forget about the fallout from Gov. Charlie Crist’s other veto this session.

Lawmakers included regulation of 527s, so-called for the section of the IRS code that covers them, in a lengthy elections bill that Crist vetoed earlier this month. The Legislature needed to act because a federal judge last year struck down the state law that covered these groups, which also go by the name of “electioneering communications organizations.”

Crist vetoed the bill, however, because it allowed for the creation of “leadership funds,” or separate fundraising accounts that could be set up by legislative leaders.

Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning is holding out hope that state lawmakers may still enact some type of regulation of these third-party political groups before the session ends on April 30.

And he’s got a reason to. That’s because Browning’s office has yet to issue a formal opinion on how to deal with these 527 organizations heading into this year’s election season.

Last August Tallahassee attorney Mark Herron asked that state Division of Elections tell him how election law would work after the federal court ruling.

“The reason we haven’t released it is because of the legislative session,” said Browning. To continue reading, click here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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