Taking Big Money Out of Politics
Money Does Not Equal Speech
When I decided to run for office, I was committed to changing the face of politics. I knew I would not court big-money donors, hold exclusive, high-priced fundraisers, spend hours fundraising during candidate “call-time,” or accept donations from corporate special interests and super PACs. Instead, I would spend my time talking directly to voters and they would fund my campaign, one individual contribution at a time. My vision has held true. Our grassroots campaign has been focused on reaching all voters in our 17 counties, talking about the issues that directly affect them -- and asking them to invest in me, so that I can fight for them. The response and support has been overwhelmingly positive, but the fact remains that this fight is a difficult one because of unlimited corporate money and secret sources of funding that have hijacked our elections and bought our political leaders.
We will have a true democracy when we remove the undue influence of wealth on politics, and amplify the voice of the people to create a nation reflective of our values: justice, equity, equality, and fairness. Here are some actions we can take to get big money out of politics:
Pass a constitutional amendment that reverses the implications of the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court ruling, which granted “personhood” to corporations and allowed them “free speech” in the form of financial political support; and that overturns the precedent set in McCutcheon v. FEC (2014) to not limit campaign contributions.
Eliminate “dark money” in campaign financing by requiring transparency and accountability of all campaign funding.
Work for an election system that is publicly funded, so that candidates will be on even ground. Votes will then be based on merit, rather than who is wealthier and more entrenched.
Pass legislation making it illegal for elected officials to receive PAC contributions.
Revamp FEC regulation and reporting to eliminate redundant or outdated regulations, and cut loopholes that allow the undue influence of corporate money and wealthy special interests in our elections.
We will have a true democracy when we remove the undue influence of wealth on politics.