The bill, the Disclose Act, is another post-Citizens United effort to curb the influence of hidden campaign spending, and a way for Democrats to frame themselves as the defenders of the public interest when it comes to money in politics. It has 34 cosponsors, not one of which is a Republican.
"The Supreme Court's Citizens United decision has subjected the American people to a flood of political ads funded by anonymous donors," Whitehouse said. "The American people deserve to know who is really behind these ads."
Reform groups, who have been lobbying for the House version of the legislation, were quick to announce their support for Whitehouse's bill.
"It is a cardinal principle of campaign finance laws that citizens have a basic right to know about the expenditures being made to influence their votes and the donors funding these expenditures," the groups -- including the Campaign Legal Center, Common Cause, Public Citizen and the Sunlight Foundation -- said in a statement.
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