campaign finance

Public Address by Lawrence Lessig – Rooting out Corruption in Politics: Complicity and Complacency by the Media

I've been a huge fan of Lessig's work for some time, and I can tell you from experience that he's a really great public speaker. You'll come away smarter after listening to him.

On March 4, the Center for Media Law and Policy will host a public address by Professor Lawrence Lessig, the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School, and director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University.  Prior to rejoining the Harvard faculty, Prof. Lessig taught at Stanford Law School, where he founded the school’s Center for Internet and Society, and at the University of Chicago.

The lecture, which is free and open to the public, will tackle one of the most challenging problems we face: corruption in politics. How have good people, with good intentions, allowed our democracy to be co-opted by outside interests, weakening our institutions and especially public trust in those institutions? What role has the media played in this weakening and what should be its role going forward?

Please join us on March 4 at 6:30 p.m. at the UNC Law School when Prof. Lessig will discuss how we can root out corruption in our politics and restore faith in the Fourth Estate’s role as a watchdog of government.



Monday, March 4, 2013 - 6:30pm to 8:00pm


UNC School of Law

North Carolina Open Elections Project

I'm excited to announce that OrangePolitics is a partner in the effort by the Raleigh Public Record to create an accessible statewide database of campaign finance information. Please read more about it and comment on the Knight News Challenge site.

Campaign finance reports are out! Who's going to analyze them?

Voter-Owned Election Public Information Session

I received the following email from the town.  It seems to be the same date (and according to the town's calendar, same location?) as the Council's Budget Worksession.  Choices, choices...

Voter-Owned Election Public Information Session May 10
Posted Date: 5/4/2011

VoteThe Town of Chapel Hill's Voter Owned Election Program will be discussed at a public information session scheduled at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 10, in the Council Chamber of Town Hall, 405 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
The program for the public funding of local municipal election campaigns is voluntary and is for candidates choosing to run for Town elective office. Prospective candidates who choose to participate in the program must demonstrate a level of public support and comply with spending restrictions and reporting requirements as established by the Town program in order to receive public funding.

The information session will be of special interest to persons considering becoming candidates and potential candidates' campaign managers and to treasurers in the municipal election for the Town of Chapel Hill on Nov. 8, 2011, and others interested in local election issues. Voters this November will be electing a mayor and four Council members.

On July 16, 2007, the Town of Chapel Hill received authorization from the North Carolina General Assembly to establish the program for public funding of local municipal election campaigns. Chapel Hill is the first local government in North Carolina to have received this legislative authority.

A Voter Owned Election is a comprehensive system that provides candidates a voluntary option for a new way to run for office. Candidates who are registered with the program agree to:

  • Collect a large number of $5 to $20 qualifying contributions to demonstrate community support 
  • Limit campaign spending 
  • Agree to comply with strict administrative rules

In return, participating candidates receive limited amounts of campaign dollars from a publicly financed fund to be used only for allowed campaign expenses.

For more information, visit

CONTACT: Kim Strach or Amy Strange, NC Board of Elections: 919-733-7173


Tuesday, May 10, 2011 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

McKee swatting a fly with a shotgun

I was surprised to read on the OrangeChat blog this week that Democrat Earl McKee, running for an open County Commissioner seat in District 2 (northern and western Orange) has raised and spent well over $10,000.  He already won the primary in May, in which he narrowly beat Renee Price, and promises to be the kind of (relatively) conservative voice that the not-so-new-anymore county commission districts were designed to elicit.

McKee is running against a Republican who has raised less than $3,000, most of which is a loan to his campaign.  Oh, and did I mention he's a Republican? He is not going to win a county-wide seat around these parts. Like that fact or or not, it hasn't happened in decades, and even if Karl Rove's PAC starts buying ads on WCHL, it's not going to start now. (I'm not saying never, though.)



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