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Political Bloggers Could Be Required To Register Or Face Jail Time
Information Week. ^ | January 17 2007 | Mitch Wagner

Posted on 01/17/2007 7:36:04 PM PST by jmc1969

An outfit called GrassRootsFreedom.com is reporting that the U.S. Senate is considering legislation that would require political bloggers with readership over 500 to register as lobbyists. If they fail to register, they could face criminal penalties up to one year in jail.

"Section 220 of S. 1, the lobbying reform bill currently before the Senate, would require grassroots causes, even bloggers, who communicate to 500 or more members of the public on policy matters, to register and report quarterly to Congress the same as the big K Street lobbyists.

(Excerpt) Read more at informationweek.com ...


TOPICS: Government
KEYWORDS: dncbrownshirts; fascist; firstamendment; pajamapeoplerule; politicalwitchhunt; shallmakenolaw
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1 posted on 01/17/2007 7:36:08 PM PST by jmc1969
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To: jmc1969

Keep your powder dry.

You're going to need it.


2 posted on 01/17/2007 7:37:05 PM PST by IncPen (When Al Gore Finished the Internet, he invented Global Warming)
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To: jmc1969

Hm. So now I gotta register as a habitual poster?


3 posted on 01/17/2007 7:37:40 PM PST by txhurl
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To: jmc1969

Yep! lets not let free speech get in the way!


4 posted on 01/17/2007 7:38:20 PM PST by GoforBroke
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To: jmc1969; PJ-Comix; Charles Henrickson; franksolich; bcsco; Barset; chesley; gardencatz

Ping for PJ, et. al. Have you seen this?


5 posted on 01/17/2007 7:38:34 PM PST by Purrcival (Grab the popcorn, it's the Nancy Pelosi Comedy Hour!)
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To: jmc1969

The LEFT Is cared to death their lies will be discovered.

They're already trying to revive the idiotic "Fairness Doctrine".


6 posted on 01/17/2007 7:38:51 PM PST by nmh (Intelligent people recognize Intelligent Design (God) .)
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To: jmc1969

Everyone here knew or should have known that Pelosi, Reid, Clinton and company were and are pocket Stalinists.


Now everyone else is learning.


7 posted on 01/17/2007 7:38:54 PM PST by Petronski (Who am I and why am I here?)
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To: M. Thatcher

lookit this


8 posted on 01/17/2007 7:39:08 PM PST by txhurl
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To: jmc1969

9 posted on 01/17/2007 7:39:15 PM PST by Revolting cat! (We all need someone we can bleed on...)
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To: jmc1969

so much for 'freedom to assemble'


10 posted on 01/17/2007 7:39:25 PM PST by moonman (`)
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To: jmc1969

Wanna bet Hillary is driving the issue?


11 posted on 01/17/2007 7:40:06 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: jmc1969

BTTT


12 posted on 01/17/2007 7:40:45 PM PST by Fiddlstix (Warning! This Is A Subliminal Tagline! Read it at your own risk!(Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: jmc1969

The big boys are doing everything they can to take away the 1st Amendments rights of grass root posters.

Which of the Senate Commies p[roposed this travesty?

People need to know who is trying to take aay their rights.

More than likely Mccain is involved.


13 posted on 01/17/2007 7:41:11 PM PST by sgtbono2002 (Peace through strength.)
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To: mylife

Sen. David Vitter (R-La.)

Well I'll be!


14 posted on 01/17/2007 7:41:35 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: jmc1969

Don't count on that paper thing, whatitsname, oh yes, Constitution, to save ya. Register your guns, register your lobbies, register your blog. Why not, say David Souter and his mates.


15 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:00 PM PST by Revolting cat! (We all need someone we can bleed on...)
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To: jmc1969

Good grief. This is not a blog, but we all communicate with more than 500 people every time we post one of our (sometimes inane) remarks. A forum of "lobbyists"...


16 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:03 PM PST by livius
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To: jmc1969
So what happens if a million people register as lobbyists? Will it shut down this entire anti free speech monstrosity?
17 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:05 PM PST by KarlInOhio (Samoans: The (low) wage slaves in the Pelosi-Starkist complex.)
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To: jmc1969
With a several decades long string of very tight, evenly matched elections, it's pretty obvious the United States is divided into two antagonistic camps.

This sort of thing is symptomatic of impending civil war.

Who are these stupid politicians so ready to toss gasoline into a fire ~ they'll undoubtedly be the first to go.

18 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:27 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: Lazamataz

This means *you*.


19 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:34 PM PST by txhurl
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To: mylife
Wanna bet Hillary is driving the issue?

She can't chance having the truth out there

20 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:49 PM PST by digger48
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To: jmc1969

SEC. 220. DISCLOSURE OF PAID EFFORTS TO STIMULATE GRASSROOTS LOBBYING.

(a) Definitions- Section 3 of the Act (2 U.S.C. 1602) is amended--

(1) in paragraph (7), by adding at the end of the following: `Lobbying activities include paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying, but do not include grassroots lobbying.'; and

(2) by adding at the end of the following:

`(17) GRASSROOTS LOBBYING- The term `grassroots lobbying' means the voluntary efforts of members of the general public to communicate their own views on an issue to Federal officials or to encourage other members of the general public to do the same.

`(18) PAID EFFORTS TO STIMULATE GRASSROOTS LOBBYING-

`(A) IN GENERAL- The term `paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying' means any paid attempt in support of lobbying contacts on behalf of a client to influence the general public or segments thereof to contact one or more covered legislative or executive branch officials (or Congress as a whole) to urge such officials (or Congress) to take specific action with respect to a matter described in section 3(8)(A), except that such term does not include any communications by an entity directed to its members, employees, officers, or shareholders.

`(B) PAID ATTEMPT TO INFLUENCE THE GENERAL PUBLIC OR SEGMENTS THEREOF- The term `paid attempt to influence the general public or segments thereof' does not include an attempt to influence directed at less than 500 members of the general public.

`(C) REGISTRANT- For purposes of this paragraph, a person or entity is a member of a registrant if the person or entity--

`(i) pays dues or makes a contribution of more than a nominal amount to the entity;

`(ii) makes a contribution of more than a nominal amount of time to the entity;

`(iii) is entitled to participate in the governance of the entity;

`(iv) is 1 of a limited number of honorary or life members of the entity; or

`(v) is an employee, officer, director or member of the entity.

`(19) GRASSROOTS LOBBYING FIRM- The term `grassroots lobbying firm' means a person or entity that--

`(A) is retained by 1 or more clients to engage in paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying on behalf of such clients; and

`(B) receives income of, or spends or agrees to spend, an aggregate of $25,000 or more for such efforts in any quarterly period.'.

(b) Registration- Section 4(a) of the Act (2 U.S.C. 1603(a)) is amended--

(1) in the flush matter at the end of paragraph (3)(A), by adding at the end the following: `For purposes of clauses (i) and (ii), the term `lobbying activities' shall not include paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying.'; and

(2) by inserting after paragraph (3) the following:

`(4) FILING BY GRASSROOTS LOBBYING FIRMS- Not later than 45 days after a grassroots lobbying firm first is retained by a client to engage in paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying, such grassroots lobbying firm shall register with the Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the House of Representatives.'.

(c) Separate Itemization of Paid Efforts To Stimulate Grassroots Lobbying- Section 5(b) of the Act (2 U.S.C. 1604(b)) is amended--

(1) in paragraph (3), by--

(A) inserting after `total amount of all income' the following: `(including a separate good faith estimate of the total amount of income relating specifically to paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying and, within that amount, a good faith estimate of the total amount specifically relating to paid advertising)'; and

(B) inserting `or a grassroots lobbying firm' after `lobbying firm';

(2) in paragraph (4), by inserting after `total expenses' the following: `(including a good faith estimate of the total amount of expenses relating specifically to paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying and, within that total amount, a good faith estimate of the total amount specifically relating to paid advertising)'; and

(3) by adding at the end the following:

`Subparagraphs (B) and (C) of paragraph (2) shall not apply with respect to reports relating to paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying activities.'.

(d) Good Faith Estimates and De Minimis Rules for Paid Efforts To Stimulate Grassroots Lobbying-

(1) IN GENERAL- Section 5(c) of the Act (2 U.S.C. 1604(c)) is amended to read as follows:

`(c) Estimates of Income or Expenses- For purposes of this section, the following shall apply:

`(1) Estimates of income or expenses shall be made as follows:

`(A) Estimates of amounts in excess of $10,0000 shall be rounded to the nearest $20,000.

`(B) In the event income or expenses do not exceed $10,000, the registrant shall include a statement that income or expenses totaled less than $10,000 for the reporting period.

`(2) Estimates of income or expenses relating specifically to paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying shall be made as follows:

`(A) Estimates of amounts in excess of $25,000 shall be rounded to the nearest $20,000.

`(B) In the event income or expenses do not exceed $25,000, the registrant shall include a statement that income or expenses totaled less than $25,000 for the reporting period.'.

(2) TAX REPORTING- Section 15 of the Act (2 U.S.C. 1610) is amended--

(A) in subsection (a)--

(i) in paragraph (1), by striking `and' after the semicolon;

(ii) in paragraph (2), by striking the period and inserting `; and'; and

(iii) by adding at the end the following:

`(3) in lieu of using the definition of paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying in section 3(18), consider as paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying only those activities that are grassroots expenditures as defined in section 4911(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.'; and

(B) in subsection (b)--

(i) in paragraph (1), by striking `and' after the semicolon;

(ii) in paragraph (2), by striking the period and inserting `; and'; and

(iii) by adding at the end the following:

`(3) in lieu of using the definition of paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying in section 3(18), consider as paid efforts to stimulate grassroots lobbying only those activities that are grassroots expenditures as defined in section 4911(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.'.


21 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:58 PM PST by conservative in nyc
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To: jmc1969

This is scary.


22 posted on 01/17/2007 7:42:59 PM PST by Commander8 (Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth? Galatians 4:16)
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To: sgtbono2002
Guess they think Huffington and Kos are just not up to the competition these days.

Is that going to include all the candidates who have their own blogs?

Where will this end.

Perhaps we'll need to set up shop offshore.

23 posted on 01/17/2007 7:43:09 PM PST by OldFriend (THE PRESS IS AN EVIL FOR WHICH THERE IS NO REMEDY)
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To: mylife
Wanna bet Hillary is driving the issue?

Nope. Kucinich is.

24 posted on 01/17/2007 7:43:14 PM PST by HarmlessLovableFuzzball
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To: KarlInOhio

I think it would give them a reason to start charging registration fees.


25 posted on 01/17/2007 7:43:42 PM PST by RabidBartender
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To: jmc1969

Here comes the NAZISM!!!

FREE SPEECH only applies to those so Annointed by the DNC. No Non-DNC approved speech will be tolerated.
SEIG HEIL!!
ABORTION UBER ALLES!!


26 posted on 01/17/2007 7:43:45 PM PST by tcrlaf (VOTE DEM! You'll Look GREAT In A Burqa!)
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To: jmc1969

bookmark and bump


27 posted on 01/17/2007 7:45:26 PM PST by armymarinemom (My sons freed Iraqi and Afghan Honor Roll students.)
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To: jmc1969

Blame this on McVain.


28 posted on 01/17/2007 7:46:05 PM PST by cynwoody
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To: Petronski
Everyone here knew or should have known that Pelosi, Reid, Clinton and company were and are pocket Stalinists.

And yet they didn't care and sat home.

29 posted on 01/17/2007 7:46:46 PM PST by Howlin (The GOP RATS - Republicans Against Total Success (Howie66))
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To: jmc1969
Great heavens - I have a habit of couching the gun control debate this way - if the Second Amendment applies only to government-approved militias, how long will it be before the First Amendment applies only to government-approved journalists?

Evidently I have my answer - right now.

30 posted on 01/17/2007 7:47:26 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: sgtbono2002

"The big boys are doing everything they can to take away the 1st Amendments rights of grass root posters."

Look...
Dems can get away with bald-faced lies, creating crisis where none exist, Decry recism but use it when it suits them, etc,etc...

The last 4 years have been a page right out of Geobbell's Propoganda Playbook, and the Dems have learned it well...

So why are we SURPRISED when they finally start making the moves that Marx and Engels assured us they would eventually???


31 posted on 01/17/2007 7:47:54 PM PST by tcrlaf (VOTE DEM! You'll Look GREAT In A Burqa!)
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To: mylife
Wanna bet Hillary is driving the issue?

More than likely you are right.

After all, she knows there are people out here like me who have -- guessing here -- 1000 bookmarks with FACTS about her husband and herself, just sitting here waiting to use them.

32 posted on 01/17/2007 7:48:13 PM PST by Howlin (The GOP RATS - Republicans Against Total Success (Howie66))
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To: Petronski
Everyone here knew or should have known that Pelosi, Reid, Clinton and company were and are pocket Stalinists.

Yeah, yeah let me guess - it's those stupid conservatives who "stayed home" fault again isn't it. It's never the fault of the testicle-free Republicans who refuse to call the Dims out and fight for what's right.

BTW, this isn't going to pass and even if it does SCOTUS will strike it down.

33 posted on 01/17/2007 7:48:21 PM PST by Extremely Extreme Extremist (Why can't Republicans stand up to Democrats like they do to terrorists?)
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To: jmc1969

Let's forget that FR is not a blog but ...


34 posted on 01/17/2007 7:49:36 PM PST by BunnySlippers (SAY YES TO RUDY !!!)
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To: conservative in nyc

Do you believe we fall under that?


35 posted on 01/17/2007 7:49:56 PM PST by Howlin (The GOP RATS - Republicans Against Total Success (Howie66))
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To: Jim Robinson; holdonnow; Grampa Dave; jveritas; Calpernia; tobyhill; Dog; Dog Gone; MNJohnnie; ...

Pay or STFU ping


36 posted on 01/17/2007 7:50:26 PM PST by txhurl
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To: KarlInOhio

It will require a massive new bureaucracy and tax increases to pay for it.


37 posted on 01/17/2007 7:50:36 PM PST by Tawiskaro
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To: jmc1969

Another proof that the Net is having its effect. The privileged political class has not found ways to deal with it, as it has with the MSM and with their grassroots. The Net subverts all these efforts, which worked so well in the past decades. The've learned to deal with the idiot box since Nixon unshaven mug in the 1960 debates, they've even learned to deal with street protests, but the Net? No way to control it. Until now, Mr Robinson.


38 posted on 01/17/2007 7:50:45 PM PST by Revolting cat! (We all need someone we can bleed on...)
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To: Commander8
This is scary.

And not 100% accurate. It does have to be a PAID effort to stimulate grassroots lobbying. It should not apply to you or me posting on Free Republic, for example, if we're not getting paid by a lobbyist to do it.

That being said, it's not the best idea in the world.
39 posted on 01/17/2007 7:50:50 PM PST by conservative in nyc
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To: mylife
Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) introduced an amendment Jan. 9 "to create criminal penalties, including up to one year in jail, if someone 'knowingly and willingly fails to file or report.'" But Vitter is now co-sponsoring Amendment 20, with Sen. Robert Bennett (R-Utah), to remove Section 220 from the bill, GrassRootsFreedom.com says.
40 posted on 01/17/2007 7:50:57 PM PST by onyx (DONATE NOW! -- It takes DONATIONS to keep FR running!!)
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To: jmc1969

Time to consider offshore (non-us) hosting:

http://www.google.com/search?q=offshore+anonymous+hosting&start=0&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official


41 posted on 01/17/2007 7:51:32 PM PST by theBuckwheat
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To: jmc1969
GrassRootsFreedom.com is reporting that the U.S. Senate is considering legislation that would require political bloggers with readership over 500 to register as lobbyists

Some major cognitive dissonance going on with the name and the mission... either that or... yeah... it's a smokescreen.

This bill must never pass. The freedom of the Internet must be protected, and here, I think liberal Dems would agree.

42 posted on 01/17/2007 7:52:52 PM PST by proud American in Canada ("We can, and we will prevail.")
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To: Revolting cat!

Re: #9

"You may use whatever is necessary, but I want them alive. NO DISINTEGRATIONS."


43 posted on 01/17/2007 7:53:43 PM PST by Christian4Bush (Too bad these leftist advocates for abortion didn't practice what they preached on themselves.)
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To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
even if it does the SCOTUS will strike it down

I wouldn't bet the farm on it. The SCOTUS is almost just another branch of the Politburo.

44 posted on 01/17/2007 7:54:01 PM PST by vetvetdoug
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To: jmc1969
And the demoncrats accuse Republicans of taking away rights.

Welcome to the world of socialism. The demoncrats want to control free speech along with every aspect of our lives.
45 posted on 01/17/2007 7:56:41 PM PST by BMC1 (11/7/06 THE DAY WE LOST THE WAR. TERRORISTS AND THE TERRORIST LOVING DEMONCRATS ARE NOW IN CONTROL.)
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To: Howlin; Jim Robinson; Mo1
We've seen this language before a while back. I think Jim Robinson posted a thread about a similar bill in a previous life. I'll try to find it.

My guess is that as long as you aren't paid by a lobbyist for posting here, it won't apply to you. I've certainly not seen one red cent from anyone - and don't want it.

What it DOES do, if I recall correctly, is give a leg up to groups like Common Cause, AARP and other so-called "good-government" membership associations, since they are exempt from its provisions if they only contact their own members to call their Congressmen. But if you and I get together, create a new group against an issue, and pay someone to create an awareness campaign for people to call their Congressmen on a particular issue, we might unknowingly get tripped up by it.
46 posted on 01/17/2007 7:56:44 PM PST by conservative in nyc
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To: BunnySlippers
Let's forget that FR is not a blog

LOL!!! I love who the media keeps misunderstanding this. They really don't get the difference between a forum and a blog.

47 posted on 01/17/2007 7:58:45 PM PST by proud American in Canada ("We can, and we will prevail.")
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To: onyx
Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) introduced an amendment Jan. 9 "to create criminal penalties, including up to one year in jail, if someone 'knowingly and willingly fails to file or report.'"

I'm so glad there's no reprise for someone knowingly and unwillingly failing to disclose $90K in his fridge. I mean, that would be un-cool.

48 posted on 01/17/2007 7:59:03 PM PST by txhurl (RINOS- Endanger them NOW)
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To: txflake
Point taken.

But Vitter is now co-sponsoring Amendment 20, with Sen. Robert Bennett (R-Utah), to remove Section 220 from the bill, GrassRootsFreedom.com says

49 posted on 01/17/2007 8:00:48 PM PST by onyx (DONATE NOW! -- It takes DONATIONS to keep FR running!!)
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To: jmc1969

What would happen if every conservative in the country registered as a lobbyist? The would have tens of million of forms to process and the system would crash.

(Or, they would bring in a bunch of illegal Spanish speaking employees to process them.)


50 posted on 01/17/2007 8:00:53 PM PST by Right Wing Assault ("..this administration is planning a 'Right Wing Assault' on values and ideals.." - John Kerry)
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