Why Flooding Politics With More Cash Might Not Be A Bad Concept

April 14, 2015 Nemes Politics

The current controversy over moneying the Department of Homeland Security has actually when again brought into sharp focus the extraordinary weak point of John Boehner– probably the least powerful speaker of the Homeyour home given that Henry Clay developed the position in 1811. As Greg Sargent notes, he is at the grace of Home ultra-conservatives, who regularly threaten his speakership if he doesn’t deal with their nutty demands.

Why is Boehner so weak? Time was, speakers preserved their power by regulating committee assignments, congressional pork, and project fundraising. However today, ultra-conservatives do not particularly appreciate committee assignments (or legislating in basic), pork-barreling is anathema, and the quantity of cash parties can bring individual prospects is a pittance.

The ungodly quantity of money spentinvested in modern-day elections is a major focus of liberal reformers, who would prefer to keep the moneythe cash out of politics. Its a deserving goal. However the method in which that cash is acquired is at least as essential as the overall amount flowing through the system. It suggests that loosening project finance laws may actually improve the shoddy state of governance in America.

Fundraising is probably the single worst part of being a contemporary political leader. As This American Life recorded in a fantastic episode, the Supreme Courts Citizens United decision and our project finance laws have interacted to make fundraising a consistent hell for political leaders.

Heres why its so bad. One person can contribute only $2,600 to a candidate per election cycle, while party committees can donate $5,000. But very PACs and certain not-for-profit groups, as a result of Citizens United, can spend nearly endless amounts, so long as they act like theyre not coordinating with candidates (a stipulation they violate continuously). This quotes up the cost of an average election, as Ryan Grim and Paul Blumenthal just recently recorded. In 2012, a Residence winner invested approximately $1.6 million, while a Senate winner invested over $11 million.

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