From The Free For All I learn that Washington state had campaign speech censor called the “Public Disclosure Commission” which could impose financial sanctions.
The official truth squad was something called the “Public Disclosure Commission.” Who would get to serve on this powerful commission? The majority stressed that PDC members “are appointed by the governor, a political officer. This group of unelected officials is empowered not only to review alleged false statements made in political campaigns but also to impose sanctions.” The possibility (or perhaps probability) that the commission’s notion of truth would reflect its political biases as well as ordinary human fallibility, seem clear, yet the statute did not require that the PDC’s decision be subjected to independent judicial review.
I am pretty shocked that I had never heard of this, and I am appalled that the state Supreme Court struck down the ruling by only 5-4. I have pretty a low opinion of voter’s ability to pick up on campaign lies, but it is impossible to see the commission working in any legitimate way. Here’s a Seattle PI article on the ruling.