Comment Submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission Endorsing a New Rule on Transparency of Corporate Political Spending

Ciara Torres-Spelliscy, Comment Submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission Endorsing a New Rule on Transparency of Corporate Political Spending (2011), available at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1955950.

Abstract:  This Comment will open with an introduction about the ways that publicly-traded corporations can legally mask their role in U.S. elections. Then in Part II, I offer a comparison from the United Kingdom, which is four decades ahead of America in providing transparency for corporate political spending. In Part III, I will explain how a new disclosure rule about political spending is in line with the Commission’s previous anti-pay-to-play rules. In Part IV, I argue that the Commission should act because its sister agencies, the FEC, IRS and FCC, have failed to address this issue. In Part V, I outline the potential scope of a new SEC disclosure rule. In Part VI, I explain why such a disclosure rule would be constitutional. And in Part VII, I conclude with a review of the many business reasons for a Commission rule requiring transparency of corporate political spending.

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