“Campaign finance is a deeply boring subject, so eye-glazing that one might almost suspect a conspiracy to make it that way, considering its centrality to how the country is governed,” writes Atlantic Editor James Bennet in this month’s magazine.
It may be more accurate to say it used to be a deeply boring subject – that is, before Stephen Colbert enlivened the issue by launching his own Super PAC with help from his lawyer, Trevor Potter.
Potter, the former FEC Chairman and Founding President and General Counsel of the Campaign Legal Center, will be at New America on October 2nd for an event that looks beyond the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision and considers how massive campaign donations are changing politics in 2012.
But before the event, you can watch him discuss campaign finance and the impact of Super PACs in a video on the Atlantic.
In the video, Potter tells Bennet that the actions of some Super PACs are “not protected by the constitution. The Supreme Court said that [these groups] should be totally independent of candidates and parties. These groups are demonstrably not independent of candidates and parties. They’re being run by friends and former employees to the candidates…”
Bennet saves the most critical question for the end: What have you learned from working with Stephen Colbert?
“There are people who are much better than I am at understanding complicated subjects and then distilling it into four minute explanations that anyone can understand,” Potter laughs. “I’ve had lawyers come up to me and say, ‘ you know I’ve been trying to understand these Super PACS and now that I’ve watched Colbert I think I finally do.”