WASHINGTON — Sen. Daniel Inouye says he is concerned about secrecy cloaking political donations, and he wants to stop nonprofits from keeping their donors anonymous.

More than a third of advertising tied to the 2012 presidential race has been paid for by nonprofit groups that never have to identify their donors, the Washington Post reported on Monday.

“I’m against that practice,” Inouye told Civil Beat in an interview on Capitol Hill Monday evening. “I hope that we can either amend that law or the court will be wise enough to throw it out.”

Nonprofits can pay for political ads with no obligation to divulge where they get their money, which can make it difficult if not impossible for voters to understand the motive behind an ad. This veil of secrecy means that elections are influenced by individuals and groups that can pull political strings without being seen in public. It also means that people can form nonprofits with the express purpose of political messaging, and lure donors by promising them anonymity.

“It’s not transparent, so the general public has no idea where the help is coming from,” Inouye said. “Some of these men or women or organizations may have motives that we’re not aware of. And when one person can put up millions of dollars without batting an eye, it concerns me. Why can’t he do this openly and say, ‘I’m buying him.'”

Between the ability for donors to politically focused nonprofits to remain anonymous and limitless spending by super PACs made possible under the controversial Citizens United ruling, the 2012 races are expected to draw record-high donations.

“When I began my business, we didn’t need this kind of money,” Inouye said. “Do you know how much my first race cost? For the Senate (in 1962), it was $60,000. For the House (in 1959), it was $15,000. That’s for the whole state, one seat.”

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