View Poll Results: Would you support Campaign Reform to allow greater individual donations?

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  • Yes

    14 46.67%
  • No

    16 53.33%
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Thread: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

  1. #41
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    I don't really understand that. Campaign contributions are a form of legalized bribery of elected officials. As far as I'm concerned, we have the right and the obligation to limit the amount of the bribes and to disclose the person offering the bribe (over some de minimis amount - a few $100 or so), in real time. It seems self evident that if Joe Corn Farmer and all his corn farmer friends give the maximum to Sen. Kansas, and then Kansas votes for increasing corn subsidies, that we should be able to draw a line between the bribe (and it is a bribe) and the vote.

    And I don't really understand why we allow transnational corporations with operations and owners all over the globe to contribute to U.S. elections. Those businesses have no allegiance to the U.S. and quite frankly are agnostic about how any policy will affect citizens OF the U.S. If it benefits them to move a plant overseas and hollow out a town, they'll do it without a second thought. We might as well allow Chinese banks to contribute or Saudi oil companies or Russian natural gas companies. I have no problems with U.S. citizens who are employees of those companies contributing like the rest of us, but I see no reason to allow corporate treasury to be used as the funding source.

    And we hear "Money = speech" or "if you limit the money then you must by definition limit speech" and those are true enough. But what that accepts as a NECESSARY evil is a $billionaire has roughly a $billion times the "speech" of a poor person. I just don't believe that was the kind of world the founders intended. If they'd wanted an oligarchy/plutocracy, they could have written an oligarchy into the Constitution.
    There is risk in any system. I prefer the risk of money to the risk of state-rationed political speech.
    "It's always reassuring to find you've made the right enemies." -- William J. Donovan

  2. #42
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hays View Post
    There is risk in any system. I prefer the risk of money to the risk of state-rationed political speech.
    Except there really is no limit on speech. Jamie Dimon has 100 different outlets. Can travel and meet with officials. Call up and get an audience with reporters on TV and print. Write editorials. Assemble meetings and rallies. Etc.

    In other words I don't see his or JPM's inability to spend $100 million on ads as any bigger restraint on actual speech than my inability to because I'm relatively poor. And I have effectively no ready outlets ready to hear my views.

  3. #43
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    Except there really is no limit on speech. Jamie Dimon has 100 different outlets. Can travel and meet with officials. Call up and get an audience with reporters on TV and print. Write editorials. Assemble meetings and rallies. Etc.

    In other words I don't see his or JPM's inability to spend $100 million on ads as any bigger restraint on actual speech than my inability to because I'm relatively poor. And I have effectively no ready outlets ready to hear my views.
    Limits on money put the state in position to ration political speech.
    "It's always reassuring to find you've made the right enemies." -- William J. Donovan

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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hays View Post
    Limits on money put the state in position to ration political speech.
    Sure, but do you really want a country where the billionaires dominate political speech and drown out the voices of the other 99.99% of the country? And why in the world should that bribery/extortion be allowed to happen in secret?

    I guess I don't see non-rationing as a worthwhile goal, not when it comes to "political speech" which by that we mean the ability to flood the airways with ads. it's a trade off for sure, but the harm in 'rationing' the speech of a billionaire with no limits on what he can say or write, and with 100 different options to make his or her opinion known, is slight, and the harm in allowing a small number of plutocrats to control the entire political message potentially destructive to the very idea of a representative republic, and one man one vote.

  5. #45
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    OP should have included "to support greater donations" in the question itself.

    I voted "yes" meaning I would support reform.

    That goddam well does not mean I want to allow larger donations and more money: I WANT SMALLER DONATIONS AND LESS MONEY.

    Could a moderator kindly change my vote from "yes" to "no"?- Thank you.

  6. #46
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    I think as long as every contribution is immediately reported to a searchable database, I would be ok. As an added kicker, the candidate has to wear a badge that has the name of the individual/organization who has contributed the most.

    Make them dress like a NASCAR racer would be amusing but probably a bit much.

  7. #47
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    Sure, but do you really want a country where the billionaires dominate political speech and drown out the voices of the other 99.99% of the country? And why in the world should that bribery/extortion be allowed to happen in secret?

    I guess I don't see non-rationing as a worthwhile goal, not when it comes to "political speech" which by that we mean the ability to flood the airways with ads. it's a trade off for sure, but the harm in 'rationing' the speech of a billionaire with no limits on what he can say or write, and with 100 different options to make his or her opinion known, is slight, and the harm in allowing a small number of plutocrats to control the entire political message potentially destructive to the very idea of a representative republic, and one man one vote.
    Real political extremism
    Democratic senators tried to limit freedom of speech.

    Forty-eight members of the Democratic caucus attempted to do something never previously done: Amend the Bill of Rights. They tried to radically shrink First Amendment protection of political speech. They evidently think extremism in defense of the political class’s convenience is no vice.


    The First Amendment, as the First Congress passed it and the states ratified it more than 200 years ago, says: “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech.” The 48 senators understand that this is incompatible — by its plain text, and in light of numerous Supreme Court rulings — with their desire to empower Congress and state legislatures to determine the permissible quantity, content and timing of political speech. Including, of course, speech by and about members of Congress and their challengers — as well as people seeking the presidency or state offices.
    "It's always reassuring to find you've made the right enemies." -- William J. Donovan

  8. #48
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    I don't really understand that. Campaign contributions are a form of legalized bribery of elected officials. As far as I'm concerned, we have the right and the obligation to limit the amount of the bribes and to disclose the person offering the bribe (over some de minimis amount - a few $100 or so), in real time. It seems self evident that if Joe Corn Farmer and all his corn farmer friends give the maximum to Sen. Kansas, and then Kansas votes for increasing corn subsidies, that we should be able to draw a line between the bribe (and it is a bribe) and the vote.

    And I don't really understand why we allow transnational corporations with operations and owners all over the globe to contribute to U.S. elections. Those businesses have no allegiance to the U.S. and quite frankly are agnostic about how any policy will affect citizens OF the U.S. If it benefits them to move a plant overseas and hollow out a town, they'll do it without a second thought. We might as well allow Chinese banks to contribute or Saudi oil companies or Russian natural gas companies. I have no problems with U.S. citizens who are employees of those companies contributing like the rest of us, but I see no reason to allow corporate treasury to be used as the funding source.

    And we hear "Money = speech" or "if you limit the money then you must by definition limit speech" and those are true enough. But what that accepts as a NECESSARY evil is a $billionaire has roughly a $billion times the "speech" of a poor person. I just don't believe that was the kind of world the founders intended. If they'd wanted an oligarchy/plutocracy, they could have written an oligarchy into the Constitution.
    I may sound a little naive right now but what about when people just simply agree with a politicians ideals? is it a crime to support someone with whom you agree with? your saying a few hundred max per person but it can take thousands to get an advertisement on television, not to mention reserving spots to hold announcements, travel fair, renting out buildings a campaign headquarters and even just local branches for the campaign. President Obama spent over a billion in his presidential campaign alone, Romney just short of a billion on his failed campaign. i mean you would need thousands and thousands of people donating the max amount to reach half of that and you expect that to fund campaigns? Are you trying to make congress singularly old rich white guys or maybe snotty trust-fund millionaire kids? cause i don't know about you (and if you have reached this success level congratulations , you should legitimately be proud cause i respect the people who have gotten there) but im middle class and i don't have nearly enough money to fund a political campaign, let alone one that has a bare minimum of 50% chance of failing.

    No, like i said in an earlier post, I understand where you are going for, im not naive enough to think all politicians are perfect and don't take bribes, but to restrain funding to political campaigns is the equivalent of denying a person the right to give to charity. No, what we need to do is have a constant surveillance on monetary movement to and from politicians, along with a separate, non-partisan comity specifically looking into any claims or possibility of bribes based off of both the first comity findings and and reports brought forward. This might sound like more people to get bribed but some barrier is better than none, i will agree with that at least.

  9. #49
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    Quote Originally Posted by ColdSteel View Post
    I may sound a little naive right now but what about when people just simply agree with a politicians ideals? is it a crime to support someone with whom you agree with? your saying a few hundred max per person but it can take thousands to get an advertisement on television, not to mention reserving spots to hold announcements, travel fair, renting out buildings a campaign headquarters and even just local branches for the campaign. President Obama spent over a billion in his presidential campaign alone, Romney just short of a billion on his failed campaign. i mean you would need thousands and thousands of people donating the max amount to reach half of that and you expect that to fund campaigns? Are you trying to make congress singularly old rich white guys or maybe snotty trust-fund millionaire kids? cause i don't know about you (and if you have reached this success level congratulations , you should legitimately be proud cause i respect the people who have gotten there) but im middle class and i don't have nearly enough money to fund a political campaign, let alone one that has a bare minimum of 50% chance of failing.

    No, like i said in an earlier post, I understand where you are going for, im not naive enough to think all politicians are perfect and don't take bribes, but to restrain funding to political campaigns is the equivalent of denying a person the right to give to charity. No, what we need to do is have a constant surveillance on monetary movement to and from politicians, along with a separate, non-partisan comity specifically looking into any claims or possibility of bribes based off of both the first comity findings and and reports brought forward. This might sound like more people to get bribed but some barrier is better than none, i will agree with that at least.
    In earlier posts I advocate "can't vote, can't contribute", and immediate and full open disclosure. What I didn't mention was that I would place no limits on the amount. As long as it's a person who is eligible to vote on on the candidate/issue, and there is immediate public disclosure, then like you say, there should be no limit for the person who believes in (or against, as the case may be) a candidate/issue.
    If you claim sexual harassment to be wrong, yet you defend anyone on your side for any reason,
    then you are a hypocrite and everything you say on the matter is just babble.

  10. #50
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    Re: Would you support Campaign Finance Reform?

    I voted no and here's why. I think campaign finance reform is and would be a sham. I would however support a constitutional amendment for term-limits.
    “I think if Thomas Jefferson were looking down, the author of the Bill of Rights, on what’s being proposed here, he’d agree with it. He would agree that the First Amendment cannot be absolute.” - Chuck Schumer (D). Yet, Madison and Mason wrote the Bill of Rights, according to Sheila Jackson Lee, 400 years ago. Yup, it's a fact.


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