Clean Elections

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Millionaire's Decision

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) has agreed to hear arguments on the so-called "millionaire's amendment" to the Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act (BCRA, aka McCain-Feingold). The millionaire's amendment exempts candidates facing wealthy self-financing opponents from certain federal campaign contribution limits established in BCRA.

Two Initiatives Diverged In a Yellow Wood...

Language is a tricky thing, as signature gatherers for two very different ballot initiatives in Alaska are learning. The first, the Clean Elections initiative would offer candidates for the state legislature a full public financing option for their races. The second, the Anti-Corruption initiative would explicitly forbid public financing of elections. Be careful which one you sign.

Cross the Aisle for Clean Elections

Control Congress is a website hosting bipartisan discussion on what Congress ought to be working on. Contributor Jack Lohman devotes this post to puzzling out why there isn't more cross-aisle agreement on the subject of full public financing of elections, given the success of Clean Elections systems in both Democrat and Republican-dominated states.

What's Next for Iowa

Presidential candidates are hatching all kinds of schemes to get their supporters to the Iowa caucuses tonight, including apparently mobilizing snow plows to help stranded would-be-voters. No doubt several Iowans would rather the candidates help them dig out from the campaign advertising under which which the state has been blanketed thanks to record fundraising and record spending.

Finding a New Audience

Professors Susan Andrews and John Creed pen this op-ed for the Juneau Empire about the rash of corruption stories in Alaska and why they point the ways towards approving the Clean Elections ballot initiative for which signatures are currently being gathered.

Time is Of The Essence

The Maryland legislature will reconvene in January and the Baltimore Sun reminds them how important it is to pass a bill creating a Clean Elections full public financing system for state legislative campaigns.

The bill nearly passed in the last session. It came just one vote shy. And Marylanders have been treated to enough scandals from their elected officials to know that the time has come to change the way candidates finance their campaigns:

 

Common Cause Launches New Ad

Our allies in the fight for Clean Elections, Common Cause, have just a launched a new newspaper ad campaign in Iowa to draw attention to the problem of special interest money in elections and press the presidential candidates to take a firm stand in support of full public financing of elections. See the ad, and read more about the campaign at Common Blog.

Transparency Isn't Enough

The Denver Post is concerned about groups and individuals finding sneakier ways to circumvent the spirit of campaign finance regulations. Not sold on the Clean Elections solution to money's pervasive influence on politics, the Post advocates better transparency about where the money funding the ads, mailings, calls, and events is coming from.

Colorado's increasing visibility on the national political landscape means people in the state are in the eye of the election storm:

Force for Change

Will public outrage over the bribery of public officials in Alaska result in an overhaul in oil and gas industry policy in the state? The Christian Science Monitor suggests that the relationship between the state and its dominant industry may get strained in the course of addressing the corruption inquiries that have already sent several Alaska lawmakers to jail.

Take Five

USA Today offers up the top five reasons to support a Clean Elections public financing model for our elections. Dismayed by legislative foot-dragging on the subject of campaign finance, the paper makes the case against big money business as usual.

Here's why we need Clean Elections: