John Bambenek is making a nuisance of himself again. He has filed a complaint with the FEC that the popular political group blog Daily Kos is an unregistered political committee. I discovered this when I saw that Atrios (another popular blogger) had bestowed upon him his semi-regular award of "Wanker of the Day."
His argument is essentially that DK provides the gift of "free advertising" to political campaigns and candidates. Since a paid advertisement on DK costs $9,000, he argues that must mean a blog post must be worth "at least that much." The only source of revenue to DK that I'm aware of is paid advertisements from the Advertising Liberally network. Those don't meet 2 USC 431. Therefore, the only possibly contribution to DK would be the value of the individual blog posts, made by unpaid community members. These clearly don't meet the status of a "contribution:"
2 USC 431(9)B: The term "contribution" does not include - (i) the value of services provided without compensation by any individual who volunteers on behalf of a candidate or political committee
The good news is that both the right and left blogosphere are fairly united in the absurdity of this complaint.
The thing I find frustrating is that I'm not convinced it has been made in good faith. The timing is suspicious. It's only a week until the Yearly Kos convention starts up in Chicago. So I rather just think this is a ploy to get attention. The sad thing is that it worked.