McConnell: Executive order on campaign finance would be illegal
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Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSessions: 'We should be like Canada' in how we take in immigrants NSA spying program overcomes key Senate hurdle Overnight Finance: Lawmakers see shutdown odds rising | Trump calls for looser rules for bank loans | Consumer bureau moves to revise payday lending rule | Trump warns China on trade deficit MORE (R-Ky.) on Wednesday slammed President Obama over reports that he is weighing tightening campaign finance laws, suggesting the move would be illegal. 

"Obama is again considering imposing his ‘enemies list’ regulation by executive order — just weeks after Congress voted overwhelmingly to pass, and the president signed into law, legislation prohibiting him from doing that very thing," he said from the Senate floor.  

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The president is reportedly considering requiring federal contractors to disclose their political contributions to outside groups. Congressional Democrats have pushed the Obama administration for years to finalize a proposed regulation to require federal contractors to disclose their political donations. 

But a provision included in last month's omnibus spending bill blocks any funds from being used to require federal contractors to disclose political donations as part of the bidding process.

It also blocks the Securities and Exchange Commission from using funds to issue new rules requiring pubic companies to disclose political donations or the IRS from creating new rules on 501(c)(4) groups' political spending as part of an end-of-the-year spending bill.

Republicans argue that requiring federal contractors to disclose donations would inject politics into the process of awarding federal contracts. 

McConnell said in addition to being against the law, the potential new regulations are "terrible policy" and that “Congress has rejected these types of polices already."  

The Republican leader — pointing to a pledge by White House chief of staff Denis McDonough that the White House would take "audacious" executive actions this year — said that Obama was governing by the "why not" standard. 
 
"If future Republican presidents lived by this why not standard, Democrats would be outraged," he said. “If future Republican presidents ignored prohibitions passed by Democrat-controlled Congresses, Democrats would be outraged."