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California lawmakers consider new rules for political ads

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California lawmakers are weighing whether to demand more transparency from groups buying political advertising.

A proposed law wending through the Senate would require so-called issue advocacy ads to include a disclaimer identifying the organization that paid for the advertisement as well as major funders.

Election campaign ads are already required to include those disclaimers. But not ads advocating for or against particular pieces of legislation.

Ads have proliferated on social media and beyond in recent months targeting bills on issues ranging from sexual abuse to consumer loans.

Tracking down the source of the ads can be nearly impossible.

The bill’s author, Democratic Assemblyman Kevin Mullin, says it will shine light on the influence of money in politics.

Critics argue the measure will discourage advocacy around hot-button issues.

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