“We can only pray Simmons is exercising more caution in handling his nuclear waste than he is handling campaign contributions.”

When long-time governmental ethics advocate Craig McDonald (quoted above) is not presenting information to the Austin Coffee Party, he and his organization Texans for Public Justice are busy uncovering the relationship between money and political influence. This time, TPJ’s hard work resulted in genuine enforcement of the law and a lessening of special interest corruption. For the full story on how a powerful PAC had to backpedal (backpeddle?) after indulging in a loose interpretation of Texas statute, check out this Texas Tribune report or perhaps this report in the New York Times.

This begs the question: where was the Texas Ethics Commission (TEC)  when all this was happening? Isn’t it that agency’s job to enforce campaign finance law?

This underscores the need for TEC to be revamped so it doesn’t have to get the approval of politicians before it can investigate a politician (or anyone else). You’ll see more on this right here next month when the Sunset Review Commission speaks about TEC.

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