Public Financing

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McKinney: Not Much for Voters

You may recall this letter from Public Campaign’s Nick Nyhart and Common Cause’s Chellie Pingree that appeared in The Hill touting the benefits of Clean Elections in opening the political process to more Americans. Here’s what they said: A democracy should be about all of us and not just those who can afford to write huge checks.

Phone Banking for Clean Elections

Last Monday, volunteers got together at Progressive Maryland’s Silver Spring office to call Maryland residents urging them to contact their Senators in this campaign to win Clean Elections in Maryland. So, what goes on at a phone bank anyway?

Had It Up To Here

Illinois' Journal Standard has "about had it with the corrupting influence of money in politics" and believes the only way to get rid of it is to embrace public financing of elections. Campaign costs rise unchecked and candidates have no choice but to chase larger and larger sums of money -- without sweeping change in the form of public financing of elections, there's no evidence the pattern will reverse itself.

 

Sen. Durbin's Speech In Support of Public Financing

In his speech on the floor of the Senate announcing his intention to introduce a full public financing bill, Assistant Majority Leader Richard Durbin (D-IL) asked his colleagues to think beyond initial ethics reform to a more comprehensive solution: "I hope it will only be the beginning and that we can move, even in this session of Congress, to meaningful hearings and the passage of public financing of campaigns that will truly reform the way we elect men and women to office at the Federal level and restore respect to this great institution of the U.S.

Signs of Progress

Joel Bleifuss, editor of In These Times writes on the need for reform in Congress that takes on the fundamental link between campaign contributions and legislation: full public financing, in the Clean Elections model, for congressional elections.

 

House Unveils Ethics Reforms

It's the first day of the 110th Congress and Democratic leaders in the House are rolling out their big ethics reform package designed to sever links between lobbyists and lawmakers with new restrictions inclusing a ban on travel, meals, and gifts to legislators paid for by lobbyists. It's a very good start, and we hope a prelude to serious consideration of full public financing of elections as the last step in "draining the swamp" and cleaning up Congress.

Gov. Spitzer Supports Public Financing

In his "State of the State" address today, newly elected New York Governor Eliot Spitzer (D) outlined his plans to clean up Albany and improve the state's campaign finance goals, with the ultimate goal being full public financing of elections. Read the statement from our sister organization, Public Campaign, on Spitzer's annoucement here.

 

States Lead Movement for Reform

David Kirkpatrick at The New York Times examines the difference between the limited progress on ethics and campaign finance reform in Congress, and the sweeping changes being made at the state level to address money in politics scandals and the pressing need for reform.

 

The Year Ahead

Happy New Year! This new year, with its new Congress brings a fresh opportunity for our representatives in Washington to listen to voters and pass full public financing of elections to make the scandals that marked 2006 a thing of the past. Our President and CEO Nick Nyhart writes in The Patriot News about the challenges ahead, and the growing support for public financing in Congress.

 

Setting the Bar

Newsday praises New York Govenor-elect Eliot Spitzer today for the steps he's already taken and plans to take to clean up Albany and bring greater transparency to the business of legislating and campaiging. They weigh in with a few further suggestiions for Spitzer, which include an ethusiastic endorsement of full public financing of elections.