Bradley A. Smith

Bradley A. Smith

Bradley A. Smith is an American political scientist. Smith is a former Commissioner, Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and currently serves as Professor of Law at Capital University Law School in Columbus, Ohio. [ cite web|url= |title=Faculty Bios |accessdate=2007-08-14 |publisher=Capitol University Law School ] A Michigan native, Mr. Smith received a B.A., cum laude from Kalamazoo College in Kalamazoo, Michigan in 1980, and his J.D., cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1990.

A Republican, he was nominated to a Republican-designated seat on the FEC on February 9, 2000 by then-President Bill Clinton to a six year term and confirmed to the post by the United States Senate on May 24, 2000. Before his nomination to the FEC in 2000, Smith was seen as one of the leading experts in campaign finance in America, with his writings on campaign finance and election issues having appeared in noted publications like the "Yale Law Journal", the "University of Pennsylvania Law Review" and the "Harvard Journal of Legislation". He had also been called on to serve as a witness before the United States House of Representatives and United States Senate on matters of campaign finance.Fact|date=September 2007

In 2001, Princeton University Press published Smith's book, [ Unfree Speech: The Folly of Campaign Finance Reform] in which he argued that most regulations on campaign finance are unconstitutional. When first nominated to the FEC there was a strong objection to his nomination from reform advocates. The libertarian magazine "Reason" noted that virtually all reform advocates "agreed that he was the wrong person for the job". [cite book | last = Huberman | first = Jack | authorlink = | coauthors = | title = 101 People Who Are Really Screwing America | publisher = Nation Books | date = | location = New York, N.Y. | pages = | url = | doi = | id = | isbn = 1560258756 9781560258759 ] His nomination, however, received strong support from groups and organizations favoring deregulation of campaign finance, including, in addition to "Reason", the "Wall Street Journal", the Cato Institute, and others.

As Commissioner and Chairman of the FEC, Smith remained controversial, particularly in 2004, when as Chairman he bucked the Republican Party and refused to support new regulations of so-called "527 groups," organizations largely unregulated by campaign finance laws that were generally believed to favor Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry. [cite book | last = Huberman | first = Jack | authorlink = | coauthors = | title = 101 People Who Are Really Screwing America | publisher = Nation Books | date = | location = New York, N.Y. | | isbn = 1560258756 9781560258759 ] After leaving the FEC, Smith founded a non-profit organization, the [ Center for Competitive Politics] , to promote deregulation of campaign finance. Smith is also a Senior Fellow at the Goldwater Institute, a member of the Board of Scholars at the [ Mackinac Center for Public Policy] , and a member of the Board of Trustees of the [ Buckeye Institute for Public Policy Solutions] . He serves on the Advisory Board [cite web|url= |title=Advisory Board |accessdate=2007-08-14 ] of the Institute for Law and Politics at the University of Minnesota Law School. In 2007-08, he was a member of Advisory Panel on the Constitution and the Court for the presidential campaign of (Mitt) Romney. [ [ The Triumvirate » Blog Archive » Romney Gets Big Shot Lawyers ] ]

Smith, a Roman Catholic, lives in Ohio with his wife and youngest daughter. Another daughter is away at college.


External links

* [ Center for Competitive Politics]

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