• Can Campaign Finance Reform Ever Work? – June 28

    Panelists: Former AG/Treasurer/Senate leader Bill Lockyer, OpenSecrets.org expert Sheila Krumholz, attorney Thomas Hiltachk and fund-raiser Kristin Bertolina Faust.

    Many voters see big money flowing into politics as a disruptive force that frustrates a true representation of the will of the people. Despite ever-tightening campaign finance laws, contributions to legislative, ballot measure and independent campaigns totaled more than $680 million in California last year. Would more or different reforms make a difference? How can the public access campaign finance information and use it to inform their votes?

    The Sacramento Press Club held a panel discussion about the role of money in campaigns, the pressure to raise funds, and the public’s right to know who is contributing. The panel included a nationally recognized expert on tracking contributions for OpenSecrets.org and representatives from both major parties who are immersed in campaign finance issues.

    Bill Lockyer
    was in the public arena from 1973 to 2015 as State Treasurer, State Attorney General, Senate President Pro Tem and member of the Senate and Assembly. During those years, he led both state and national initiatives to improve the lives of Californians and make the state run more efficiently and effectively. Today he serves as counsel in the Government Law & Strategies section for law firm Brown Rudnick.

    Sheila Krumholz is the executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics, which operates the go-to OpenSecrets.org site for all matters related to federal campaign money, lobbying and dark money. Before becoming executive director in 2006, she spent eight years as the Center’s research director, supervising data analysis for OpenSecrets.org and CRP’s clients. In 2010, Fast Company magazine named Sheila to its “Most Influential Women in Technology” list.

    Thomas Hiltachk is managing partner at Bell, McAndrews & Hiltachk, LLP. He has practiced political and election law exclusively since 1988, and has served as legal counsel and treasurer to statewide and local ballot measure committees, political action committees, trade associations and candidates. Hiltachk has represented state ballot measure committees on a variety of issues, including tax policy, the environment, education, civil and criminal justice reform and gaming. He has served as legal counsel to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R).

    Kristin Bertolina Faust leads Bertolina & Barnato, one of the most successful Democratic fundraising firms in California. Since founding the firm in 1999, she has worked with an “all-star” list of elected officials, candidates, committees and organizations. She has successfully provided both political strategy and fundraising services to candidates running and serving from the local, state and federal levels. She is most widely known for advising some of the California’s most successful statewide elected officials including U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom and Secretary of State Alex Padilla.

    About the lunch:
    Date: Wednesday, June 28
    Time: 11:30 registration opens, lunch 11:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
    Where: State Building & Construction Trades Council at 1231 I St, Suite 302
    RSVP Deadline: Online sales have closed.

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