Senate panel advances disputed FEC nominee
The Senate Rules Committee on Wednesday advanced four nominees to the Federal Election Commission, including one who has targeted tribes and their political prowess.

Hans A. von Spakovsky has been serving at the FEC in an acting capacity for nearly two years. In one of his first actions, he issued a statement that said tribes were exploiting a "loophole" in campaign finance law in order to make large political contributions.

Before he went to the FEC, Spakovsky worked as a lawyer for the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division, which handles voting rights issues. In that position, he denied quashing an investigation into Native voting rights in Minnesota in a case that the National Congress of American Indians and the American Civil Liberties Union won in federal court.

The committee advanced von Spakovsky's nomination and the nominations of three other FEC nominees without a recommendation for or against. It is not known how the full Senate will treat the group.

Get the Story:
FEC Nominees' Names Sent to Senate for Vote (The Washington Post 9/27)
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Hans von Spakovsky Statement:
Tribal Political Contributions (February 8, 2006)

FEC Advisory:
Indian Tribes (February 2, 2006)

Federal Elections Commission Opinions:
Advisory Opinion 1999-32 (January 28, 2000) | Advisory Opinion 2000-05 (May 15, 2000) | Advisory Opinion 2005-01 (March 14, 2005)

More Advisory Opinion 2005-01 Documents:
Advisory Opinion Draft A and Draft B | Tribe's Request for Advisory Opinion

Relevant Links:
Federal Election Commission - http://www.fec.gov
PoliticalMoneyLine - http://www.politicalmoneyline.com
Center for Responsive Politics - http://www.opensecrets.org

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