2012 GOP Platform Calls for Full Repeal of McCain-Feingold

August 28, 2012 - 5:29 PM
APTOPIX Republican Convention

Texas delegate Clint Moore and the rest of Texas delegates fashion their cowboy hats at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

(CNSNews.com) – In a dramatic shift from 2008, the 2012 Republican Party Platform calls for the repeal of the remaining pieces of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform law. The move is a shift in policy just four years after the GOP nominated Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) as its presidential nominee.

“We oppose any restrictions or conditions that would discourage Americans from exercising their constitutional right to enter the political fray or limit their commitment to their ideals,” the platform stated.

“As a result, we support repeal of the remaining sections of McCain-Feingold, support either raising or repealing contribution limits, and oppose passage of the DISCLOSE Act or any similar legislation designed to vitiate the Supreme Court’s recent decisions protecting political speech in Wisconsin Right to Life v. Federal Election Commission and Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.”

The new language marks a dramatic shift from the 2008 platform, which made no mention of campaign finance reform, including only a blanket statement endorsing free-speech restrictions.

“We oppose any restrictions or conditions upon those activities that would discourage

Americans from exercising their constitutional right to enter the political fray or limit their commitment to their ideals,” the 2008 platform said.

Since the adoption of the 2008 platform, the Supreme Court invalidated parts of McCain-Feingold, striking down the sections of the law that restricted corporate campaign spending and placed limits on when certain groups could publish campaign-related advertisements or productions.

The 2012 platform goes further, however, in calling for the repeal of the remaining parts of the law, including contribution limits that many Republicans blame for the rise of so-called Super PACs – arguing that if individuals and activist groups were allowed to give unlimited amounts of money to candidates they would do so, effectively making Super PACs and other outside groups obsolete.