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January 23, 2014

Shumlin (Quietly) Signs Campaign Finance Bill into Law

Just a BillRemember that campaign finance bill? The one that increases the amount of money statewide politicians, parties and political action committees can raise? (We wrote about it here, here, here and here.)

Whelp, a bill it is no longer. Asked Thursday afternoon when it would be signed into law, Gov. Peter Shumlin's spokeswoman Sue Allen said the deed's already been done.

"The Governor signed the campaign finance bill earlier today," she said in an email.

If you were waiting for a public signing with a crowd of supporters and plenty of pens to give away, you apparently didn't miss anything. The gov signed the bill into law without any public notice, nor — as of this writing — any public statement. (Updated below with a statement from Shumlin's office)

So when did it happen? And where? 

"This morning, in his office," Allen replied.

"I'm not surprised that he signed it with no fanfare and no media presence," says Vermont Public Interest Research Group executive director Paul Burns, who criticized the bill — ahem, law — for increasing the amount of money in politics, not decreasing it. "I suspect the governor recognized that the bill was not one that he'd want to draw a lot of attention to or celebrate as one making great progress on campaign finance reform."

We're confident the governor is still working on his remarks celebrating his signing of the law and will be sure to update this post when we receive them.

Updated at 9:40 p.m.:

Sure enough, here's the statement from Gov. Shumlin's office: "Today the Governor signed S.82, an act relating to campaign finance law."

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