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The Washington Post: Constitutional issues arise with a Dominion contribution ban

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Opinion article by contributing columnist Norman Leahy

There’s an old saying in Virginia politics that Dominion Energy has the best General Assembly money can buy. It’s not entirely wrong. Dominion’s sizable campaign checkbook appears to have generated some solid returns for the regulated utility over the years, regardless of which party holds a majority in Richmond.

Ending the utility’s influence over state politics is the aim of three bills pending in the state House and Senate. Though the details vary, the aim is the same: banning political contributions from Dominion.

. . .

According to Eric Wang, a campaign finance attorney and partner at the Gober Group, banning contributions from state-regulated utilities such as Dominion “present[s] a unique situation.”

“Having a natural and singular monopoly could strengthen the legal justification for enacting a ban on contributions from the sector,” Wang said, “whether that is based on an anti-corruption or consumer protection rationale.”

Link to full article here.