California would push political bloggers to disclose payments they receive from campaigns under a proposal that the state Fair Political Practices Commission will consider in coming months.
In closing remarks Thursday at a Sacramento symposium on a wide range of political and campaign issues, FPPC Chairwoman Ann Ravel announced plans to seek a vote by her commission on blogger disclosure.
Details of the proposal have not yet been worked out, such as what level of payments would trigger disclosure to readers on websites where bloggers post their political or campaign-related opinions
Ravel said she initially plans to ask the FPPC to pass an advisory measure, meaning that disclosure by bloggers would be suggested but not required for the November election. Her goal for future elections is mandatory disclosure, she said.
Campaigns already must disclose expenditures to bloggers but this requirement would affect political bloggers like me. In other words, should a campaign donate say $500 to my marvelous blog for the excellent coverage that I have on California and other political matters, I would have to submit a form.
I have no problem with the disclosure, but the devil will be in the details of the rule/law.
What about advertising?
What if a political consultant donates and not the campaign? A media or communications firm?
I understand the intent of the rules and I have known of some egregious abuses AND payments to bloggers.
But, how about the mainstream media outlets and their reporters/producers? Will they have to disclose, particularly those freebee tickets to another party, political or sports event in return for coverage?
By the way, all of you POLS out there and political consultants, I WILL accept your contributions and your paid advertisements.
As always though – no quid pro quo.