Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

This Isn't about the Donald We Must Work to Restore Normalcy to Campaigns through Finance Reform

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

This Isn't about the Donald We Must Work to Restore Normalcy to Campaigns through Finance Reform

Article excerpt

While everyone is waiting breathlessly for Donald Trump's next utterance, here is something worthwhile to think about: campaign finance reform. Don't stop reading! (Side note: Mr. Trump's dodge that his comment about Megyn Kelly was about a nosebleed is a lie and everyone knows it. This will get worse for Mr. Trump before it gets better. But moving on. ...)

Campaign finance reform is one of those issues that both parties talk about, but a mutual suspicion exists because each thinks the other is trying to get some kind of financial advantage out of a deal. That line of thinking, combined with the First Amendment argument, combined with unnecessary tinkering, has left us with a system in which only the candidates and national parties are regulated, and everyone else can do whatever they want. And despite the fact that there is bipartisan consensus that the situation is untenable, not much has been done about it.

Well, for better or for worse, Reps. John Sarbanes, D-Md., and Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., have started a discussion. They are the lead co-sponsors of H.R. 20, the Government by the People Act, which has nearly 150 other co-sponsors in the House. This bill would "counter the influence of big money in politics and return power and a voice to the people" by providing citizens with a small tax credit for campaign contributions, a 6-to-1 match for small donor contributions from a fund and other public-matching fund incentives. …

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