As long as it doesn't apply to me
Money has a way of blinding people sometimes. So maybe that is why I always find campaign finance legislation so interesting. Yes it is particularly interesting this term as it is one of the few places Democratic supermajorities really could come into play. But no matter how many votes what party has, it always creates interesting politics.
Take this story from the Fresno Bee where Andy Vidak explained his vote against legislation meant to make it harder to funnel anonymous funds into California campaigns (e.g. the infamous Arizona to No on Prop 30 shell game). Now Vidak is from a moderate district. So he can't just be against campaign finance reform. So instead he takes issue with the provision of the bill that would cause it to take effect in July rather than January.
All good and well. Except he is up for election in November in a potentially expensive race that could attract the very types of "dark money" the bill is trying to regulate. So in essence he is saying to Central Valley voters, "I'm all for campaign finance reform, just let me get through my election first, OK?"
Vidak is far from alone. I still chuckle to myself every time I remember this Sacramento Bee article detailing Common Cause's opposition to another campaign finance bill trying to deal with the same issue by putting new disclosure rules on non-profits (like Common Cause). I can't do any better than their own spokesman who said. "It would be a headache for them." Them, meaning non-profits, meaning Common Cause.
This doesn't mean Vidak doesn't have legitimate concerns. It doesn't mean Common Cause doesn't have legitimate concerns. But as I said, it is always interesting.