President Biden on Tuesday called on Senate Republicans to back the Democrats’ push to root out “dark money” from politics with just weeks until the midterm votes.
Senate Democrats are preparing to vote this week on legislation that would offer voters a look under the hood of nonprofits and other political groups by no longer allowing anonymous contributions of more than $10,000.
“Dark money has become so common in our politics,” Mr. Biden said from the White House. “I believe sunlight is the best disinfectant.”
“I acknowledge it’s an issue for both parties,” he added. “But here’s the key difference: Democrats in Congress support more openness and accountability. Republicans in Congress so far don’t. I hope they’ll come around.”
Spending from groups that do not have to disclose donors topped $1 billion for the first time in 2020 and largely benefited Democrats, according to OpenSecrets, a nonprofit that tracks campaign finance and lobbying.
Conservatives oppose changing the rules that exempt nonprofit groups from disclosing donors. They say it would be an invasion of privacy and an attempt to shame the political beliefs of individuals and corporations, strengthening the left’s cancel culture.
Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, said that he will put the bill, known as the DISCLOSE Act, up for a vote this week. The measure will face certain defeat in the chamber, which is split 50-50 between the parties.
“What reason under heaven is there for keeping massive political contributions hidden from the public,” Mr. Schumer said Tuesday on the Senate floor. “The rights of voters and the health of our democracy far outweigh any interests that multibillionaire could have in concealing political spending from public scrutiny.”