The U.S. House Republican leadership delivered a letter to the White House today regarding the president's proposed executive order that would require federal contractors to disclose all independent and third party political donations made by their organization.
"Given that the Federal Election Campaign Act currently regulates the funding and reporting of political speech in federal campaigns, and existing statutes and regulations govern the performance and business practices of federal contractors, it is very difficult for us to find any compelling justification for the new reporting requirements that would be required by this proposed EO," the top GOP members said in their letter.
Third District U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.), who serves as chairman of the Subcommittee on Elections, says that the move by the Obama administration is driven by politics.
"If implemented, this order would grant Washington bureaucrats the flexibility to approve or deny federal contracts for purely political purposes," said Harper. "In the absence of legislative action, the president has chosen to abuse his executive authority by legislating from the Oval Office."
In the 111th Congress, the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives advanced the "DISCLOSE Act," which was designed to block organizations from engaging in political debate before the 2011 elections by requiring them to comply with difficult disclosure requirements. Though the proposal would ultimately die in the U.S. Senate, the plan exempted unions from the most burdensome regulations.
"The American people rejected the so-called "DISCLOSE Act' last Congress because they understood that their constitutionally protected freedom of speech would have been violated," added Harper.