I don't know about federally financed, I'd like to see people stop being able to buy elections. First, make it illegal to donate directly to any specific political campaign. If you want to donate, you donate to a general fund which gets dispensed equally to all people running in a particular election. Individual politicians cannot put a penny of their own money into their campaign. That puts everyone on an even playing field. Second, assign federal financial overseers to each campaign who keep track of every penny spent. Anyone who plays hanky panky earns a quick trip to jail for financial misconduct. Third, I'd like to see a limit on how much advertising and especially how much negative campaigning can be done. Require TV and radio stations, as a consequence of their FCC licenses, to air a certain number of 30-second political ads per day (probably under 5 ads), spread out amongst all candidates. These are done in such a way that there is equal coverage among the candidates in various times of the day.
We need to get the elections to be about issues, not money.
No. It is difficult to argue against the grain that money=freedom of speech and controlling that is going against freedom of speech. It would be silliness if the government would try to go against the mass opinion on this issue. Next, campaign finance reform has just been one giant package of unintended consequences and shuffling the money elsewhere, constantly trying to find the hole to plug it up.
Not simply, but yes, an expression of speech.
The truth is that you will not remove the power of money from the equation of American politics. Democrats have tried for decades, and for their own party it has not worked well.
Currently, an individual can contribute up to $1,000 per candidate per election; political action committees may spend $5,000 per candidate per election; and individuals may spend unlimited amounts of their own money on their own campaigns. Congress passed these limitations during the post-Watergate "let's get the money out of politics" frenzy. But these constraints, as always, simply induced candidates to figure out a way of raising more money. Enter the often-criticized "soft money," contributions made to political parties, with neither limits nor regulation.
Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-FL)
Sen. Roland Burris (D-IL)
Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA)
Rep. Nathan Deal (R-GA)
Sen. John Ensign (R-NV)
Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-IL)
Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA)
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
Rep. Alan B. Mollohan (D-WV)
Rep. John P. Murtha (D-PA)
Rep. Charles B. Rangel (D-NY)
Rep. Laura Richardson (D-CA)
Rep. Pete Visclosky (D-IN)
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA)
Rep. Don Young (R-AK)
So corperate donations are ok in your book and it's simply an expression of freedom of speech huh?
That's not the issue involved. The issue involved is that even if you do get federally financed political campaigns anyways, or inhibit corporate donations to candidates, there's nothing to stop an independent organization from putting out their own ad in favor of one candidate or criticizing another candidate.
So even if, say, GM was prohibited from giving millions to Congressional candidates there's nothing to stop GM from instead giving millions to an independent "advocacy" organization which could then produce and broadcast it's own ads supporting or criticizing a candidate. Doing that can't be prohibited because of freedoms of speech and freedoms of assembly.
If you're against corporate interests having an undue influence over federal legislation, then the answer isn't to limit campaign financing. Rather, the answer is to implement a system of federal popular initiatives that gives some amount of legislative control over the people. That's pretty much the only way it can be done.
I disagree. Third party advertisment should just be outlawed and campains financed by the public. End this bull**** lobbying.
So what's the difference between a third-party advertisement, a public service announcement regarding government issues from a private organization, and a blogger who posts on the internet advocating one candidate's policy over another?
It isn't a public service announcement if it is done by a private organization. It's a private service announcement. Corporations don't have a vote they are not individuals.. they should never make donations to your elected representatives.
Okay then. What about executives who are in charge of corporations? There's nothing to stop them from donating to candidates in order to pursue the benefit of the corporation they are a part of.
There is a way to fix the problem of independent groups putting out junk political ads: ban all political ads. Institute mandatory formal debate in writing/television in its place for all candidates. All funding should be public, based on tax dollars. There should be no independent funding allowed, from corporations or citizens.