Monday, December 10, 2007

Candidate Review - Electoral Reform - John McCain

It would be hard for John McCain to ignore the issue of campaign finance reform, I suppose. His solution is pretty standard for the Republicans actually, although expressed more emphatically.
As John McCain has said, "Americans believe that political representation is measured on a sliding scale. The more you give the more effectively you can petition your government." It is no coincidence that the most influential lobbyists with the greatest access in the nation's Capitol are also the most prolific political fundraisers, and that incumbents attract money in far greater volumes than most challengers.

Most Americans understand that competitive elections in a free country require money. Since campaigns require spending funds to communicate with voters, they know we can never take money completely out of politics, nor should we. Americans have a right to support the candidates and the parties they endorse, including financially if they so choose.

But what most Americans worry about profoundly is corporations or individuals with huge checks seeking the undue influence on lawmakers that such largesse is intended to purchase. That is why John McCain has fought to enforce long-standing prohibitions on corporate and union contributions to federal political parties, for sensible donation limits, disclosure of how candidates and campaigns are funded, and the diligent enforcement of these common sense rules that promote maximum public participation in the political process and limit opportunities for corruption.

John McCain understands that in America the people are sovereign, and deserve a political process worthy of the sacrifices that have been made by so many to keep us free and proud. As President, John McCain will see to it that the institutions of self-government are respected pillars of democracy, not commodities to be bought, bartered, or abused.
In other words, he's aware of the issue, but he doesn't favor much more than bandaids. Still even proscribing band-aids is enough to get him in trouble with the Republican Base.

I will say after a week of reviewing these candidates, I still think public financing of elections, mandatory paper trails, and redistricting to make races competitive are all good and necessary ideas.

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