Your Host: Anthony Galvez

Real Campaign Finance Reform

We all hear cries from politicians and citizens alike for campaign finance reform. We all know that our politicians in their quest to get re-elected could be tempted and succumb to influence from their larger donors.

It doesn’t matter if the donor is a non-profit, a corporation contributing to a PAC, a Union, or any other organization that you may agree with or may not.   The fact is that campaigns cost a lot of money to run and most candidates will buckle when pressured to win an election.  They are human and anyone can have moments of weakness.  To remove the angst that most voters have when they hear about this difficult issue, I propose the following solutions.

That:

  • Any citizen or legal resident may contribute to the campaign of any candidate that they choose.
  • The total value of any citizen or legal resident’s contribution shall be as indicated in the current FEC guidelines or as amended from time to time.
  • Each and every campaign contribution shall be reported no matter how small or large.
  • Individual contributions from a Citizen/Legal Resident may not be delivered in a bundled fashion with other Citizens/Legal Residents.
  • No funds from unverified donors shall be allocated or spent until verified. The donation shall be retained in an FEC compliant account to segregate it and prevent commingling with verified funds.
  • Where fictitious names are used or the authenticity of the donor cannot be verified, the candidate must immediately deliver to the opposing candidate 1/2 of the unverified contribution. Where multiple candidates are present, the 50% portion shall be divided pro-rata between all candidates based on the average of 3 polling institutions established by state law.
  • Contributions from PAC, corporations, or any entity not a citizen or legal resident shall be made to a Political Party registered with the FEC and may not be paid directly to any candidate.
  • Individual Contributions from PAC, corporations, or any entity not a citizen or legal resident may not be delivered in a bundled fashion with other PAC, corporations, or any entity not a citizen or legal resident contributions.
  • 50% of any contribution from PAC, corporations, or any entity not a citizen or legal resident to a Political Party shall be delivered to all opposing Parties.  The 50% portion shall be divided pro-rata between all FEC registered parties based on weighted registrations of the opposing parties based the average of 3 polling institutions established by FEC law and their respective data.

This is our starting point on principles that any legislation should contain.

Regrettably,  you will see the multitude of Non-profits, NGOs, PACs, Unions, Corporations, Business sector orgs., etc. argue that they deserve special treatment.   In order for true campaign reform to take place, we need to ensure that the contribution to a Party or Candidate will not drive the process because the contributions are shared to remove the incentive.

If you have a better idea, post it in a comment.