Sen. Todd Weiler wants lobbyists who donate time to assist a candidate to report that on state disclosure forms.
Weiler's SB 97, which passed out of a Senate committee on Monday, would require lobbyists who provide assistance to a candidate in a special election to fill an open seat to disclose how many hours they donated to the candidate.
"I've been involved in a number of midterm vacancies and it's a vulnerable two or three week period. Candidates are jockeying to get upper hand," says Weiler. "Lobbyists can often tip the outcome. If a registered lobbyist is going to be lobbying that person they are going to help get elected, then the public needs to know that."
Weiler knows requiring lobbyists to report the time they donate to a candidate is a paradigm shift. He's also expecting some sort of push back, but doing that will put lobbyists who may not favor the change in an uncomfortable position.
"Who is going to stand up and say they don't want more transparency and they like more of this 'dark consulting' to happen?"