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Sunday, October 28, 2012

He may be right

Tom Humphreys does a good overview of our states campaign disclosure laws. They are  a mess. You might think contribution limits help the little guy but with the system we now have it is just the opposite.

From the Humphreys article....

As things stand now, the contribution limits can be easily and effectively ignored if you've got the money and a willingness to set up a PAC or two or three. Or, under a fairly recent change in the law, you're a corporation that wants to give corporate money to candidates. It's like the provision of current law that now says lobbyists can't give to candidates -- probably unconstitutional if anyone challenged it. But, of course, there's no need because lobbyists can give if they set up a PAC.


The bottom line is that the rich and politically astute folks have no effective limit on how much they can give to politicians, unless they're make an innocent mistake by getting in a rush or something.


Throw in the US supreme court decision saying money is speech and the Tennessee AG opinion saying the state cant limit how much a person can donate to their own campaign and you have the current setup where, if you have money, it can be wide open.

I took a stab at trying to reign in campaign spending for governor and the legislature last year but it didn't really get traction. Humphreys may be right. it may be time to scrap it all and go with a full disclosure no limits system.

2 comments:

  1. ..."it may be time to scrap it all and go with a full disclosure no limits system. "

    but, but, but, Senator if you do that, how will the Democrats control an unpaid lobbyist like Tony Gottlieb from contributing to a guy like Stacey Campfield?

    ReplyDelete
  2. ..."it may be time to scrap it all and go with a full disclosure no limits system. "

    That would make sense, which is why it hasn't been done.

    ReplyDelete

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