Monday, October 4, 2010

Current Events Watch- Campaign Finance


Review stories in the news about how money is raised and spent on campaign elections. Then reflect on different attempts at campaign finance reform. Use specific examples from the California's Governors Race.

20 comments:

  1. There have been many reforms to try and cut sources for campaign finance, especially on the state level. Private funds, funds from unions, and extorted money are all problems that need to be reformed in state campaigns. IN California's 2010 Governor Election, Meg Whitman has spent over $119,000,000 of her own private money. By the assosciative property, this means anyone with large amounts of money has the ability to campaign for governor. THis is possible because Meg WHitman has no support from any of California's major companies or organizations. Jerry Brown has also broken campaigning laws, he has directly asked for funding from unions. THe offer never directly came though, so Brown was still able to run.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Meg-Whitman-breaks-US-apf-1599822754.html?x=0&.v=1
    http://hoguenews.com/?p=8990

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  2. The rule in politics is: “Pay as you go.” So you really need to start fundraising as soon as possible, even before your group goes public. Early fundraising is necessary if you are renting space, installing phones, ordering supplies, and purchasing advertising space. The strategy and quality of a campaign depends on the funds available.

    A campaign that starts raising funds early shows that there are people supporting and investing in your political agenda.

    Fundraising responsibilities can take a lot of time and effort, so it is important to select a set team of people to handle these duties. Instead of having people work on raising funds, advertising, and recruitment, narrow the jobs down. This will make it easier for people to focus on their assignments and get a lot more accomplished.

    Assign Fundraiser’s Tasks

    The number of people you have working on the fundraising team will definitely depend on how big your campaign organization is and how much money you need to raise. You should choose a fundraising chairperson who is not also the budget chairperson. The budget chairperson is in charge of the money going out, while the fundraising chairperson is in chairperson is in charge of the money coming in. will split time between the budget (money going out) and fundraising (money coming in). By keeping these duties separate, you won’t have the same person worrying about bringing money also watching the details of disbursing it.
    A major source of funds for political campaigns is from partisan parties. When you go to a party for endorsement, you are asking for both financial backing and party support. Endorsement from a political party (like the Democratic, Republican, or Green parties) will often provide your campaign with access to the party’s allied organizations for more funding opportunities.

    Ask, Ask, Ask!

    The best way to get money is to ask for it. You can ask by mail, telephone, and face to face. Direct mail requests should go out early to everyone who might possibly be interested in supporting the campaign. At the same time you ask for monetary donations, you can also recruit volunteers and request other contributions (free printing, free paper, etc.). Keep track of everyone you ask for donations, and also track everyone who donates (and the amount they contribute).

    Campaign Reform:
    Although attempts to regulate campaign finance by legislation date back to 1867, the first successful attempts nationally to regulate and enforce campaign finance originated in the 1970s. The Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1972 required candidates to disclose sources of campaign contributions and campaign expenditures. It was amended in 1974 with the introduction of statutory limits on contributions, and creation of the Federal Election Commission Act (FECA). It attempted to restrict the influence of wealthy individuals by limiting individual donations to $1000 and donations by Political Action Committees (PACs) to $5000. These specific election donations are known as ‘Hard money.’ The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) of 2002, also known as "McCain-Feingold," after its sponsors, is the most recent major federal law on campaign finance, which revised some of the legal limits on expenditures set in 1974, and prohibited unregulated contributions (commonly referred to as "soft money") to national political parties. ‘Soft money’ also refers to funds spent by independent organizations that do not specifically advocate the election or defeat of candidates, and funds which are not contributed directly to candidate campaigns.

    In early 2010, the United States Supreme Court ruled in a related case before it, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited pursuant to the right of these entities to free speech.

    Bibliography:
    http://hubpages.com/hub/Raise-Money-for-Political-Campaigns
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance_reform_in_the_United_States

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  3. Money is raised in campaign elections by buying air time for T.V. advertisements, organizations, private individuals, trade unions, and public financing. The money is spent on the political process and "Correct handling of political finance impacts a country's ability to effectively maintain free and fair elections, effective governance, democratic government and regulation of corruption."
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance)
    Different attempts at campaign finance reform in America, "the first significant attempt to curb the influence of money on politics was the Pendleton Act of 1883. It said that a federal worker was under no obligation to "contribute to any political fund, or to render any political service, and that he will not be removed or otherwise prejudiced for refusing to do so." Then later in 1907, Congress passed the Tillman Act which prohibited "corporations and national banks from contributing to federal campaigns." Then three years later, the Publicity Act was made in order to require "House candidates to fully disclose all campaign spending and contributions."
    (http://www.campaignfinancesite.org/history/reform3.html)
    In recent years, in 2002, George W. Bush signed a Finance Reform Act and very recently, John Mccain created the McCain-Feingold Act.
    (http://money.howstuffworks.com/campaign-finance5.htm)
    Specific examples from the California Governors Race:
    Jerry Brown-> "Based on past performances, Brown can be expected to weigh in on the issue of campaign finance reform, particularly in view of the target presented in the form of a wealthy corporate opponent with large sums of money that she is willing to spend to get herself elected."
    (http://www.politicalcortex.com/story/2010/6/14/192254/307)
    Meg Whitman-> Does not feel that a finance reform is going to help fix the overall economic issues in CA.

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  4. One of the most popular stories in the news is about how Meg Whitman spent over $119,000,000 of her own money in the Golden State race. She has got some financing from the republican party, private funding, unions and much more other sources. But the interesting thing is that Brown is neck to neck with her even though she spent much more money on her campaign. Even though spending money does help it doesn't help if she will lose. Hillary Clinton says, “She’s going to set the record for most money spent in a losing campaign,”.(http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2010/09/15/whitman-bests-bloombergs-personal-spending/). So mostly I could run for anything if I have enough money because clearly that is shown with Meg Whitman.

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  5. In the past months news, California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman, has surpassed records of financial spending for campaigning. Having spent over 115 million of her own money, her spokesman claimed, "she will spend what it takes to get her message out to the people of California." http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2010/09/15/whitman-bests-bloombergs-personal-spending/
    This money was from her successes at ebay, the online auction website, because she started when it was at rock bottom and raised it up while also becoming CEO of the company. With all the campaign money, it has been spent on the lion’s share, $51 million, has been spent on radio and television ads. Consultants have been paid $8.5 million. Opposing opponent Jerry Brown has been gathering his money from "simply calling up prospective supporters and asking for donations, one dollar at a time." http://www.examiner.com/elections-2010-in-san-francisco/record-campaign-spending-for-the-governor-s-seat
    While some people are being bought with this campaign money, there have been some red flags raised because the money spent on campaigning could have easily been used to help the poverty rates that are growing. Whitman is all about the money and promoting her image as well as her message, while Jerry Brown is more about the people and asks simply for donations and not giving out the wrong impression. Campaign reforms have been issued based on, "The Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1972 requiring candidates to disclose sources of campaign contributions and campaign expenditures. It was amended in 1974 with the introduction of statutory limits on contributions, and creation of the Federal Election Commission Act (FECA)." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance_reform_in_the_United_States
    Although these reforms have been set forth, Meg Whitman has not broken any because she is spending her own money in which she made on her own.

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  6. Meg Whitman has spent $140,000,000 to become governor. "The amount is more than ten times the what Brown, the Democratic candidate, spent during the same period, $10 million."
    (http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7020140599?Whitman%20Campaign%20Spending%20Now%20At%20$140%20Million%20As%20Early%20Voting%20Begins)
    Whitman broke the record for most money donated to her own campaign. Opponent Jerry Brown claims that she is using money to make up for her having an illegal immigrant working for her for eleven years, despite her stance on immigration. Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman are pretty close in popularity but Whitman spent way more money to achieve it.

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  7. People get money for political campaigns by having fundraisers and getting donations. In today’s politics it’s “Pay as you go”. In the case of the California’s Governors race, Meg Whitman has used her own funds from her success at eBay to fund her race. “Republican Meg Whitman has spent more than $140 million so far on her campaign for California governor, nearly $40 million of it during the last three months, she reported Tuesday.”(http://news.yahoo.com)
    Before 1972 candidates were not required to disclose who was help funding there campaign. “The Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1972 required candidates to disclose sources of campaign contributions and campaign expenditures. It was amended in 1974 with the introduction of statutory limits on contributions, and creation of the Federal Election Commission Act (FECA).” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance_reform_in_the_United_States)

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  8. Personal donation is the most used form of donation in campaigns today. An example of this would be Meg Whitman's $119 million dollar donation from one donor for her campaign. While both candidates are getting money from certain special interest groups, they are not getting the majority of their donations from there because of the FECA. However, Individual donations have been crucial for Jerry Brown's campaign funding. The candidates' parties such as the GOP are supporting their candidates with donations for advertising. Many groups are spending millions of dollars supporting these candidates, especially Meg Whitman due to her corporate background.
    "http://www.mercurynews.com/politics-government/ci_16086492"
    "http://sfist.com/2010/10/07/brown_still_has_plenty_of_money_lef.php"
    "http://www.beyondchron.org/news/index.php?itemid=8567"

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  9. Candidates collect money for their political campaigns by donations, political parties, and even their own funds. For example, Meg Whitman. She has spent over $119 million from her own funds, surpassing the record of $110 million spent by Micheal Boomberg. Whitman's spokesperson claims, “Meg has said she will spend what it takes to get her message out to the people of California.” Therefore, the only way to get their message out to the people is by fundraising for the political campaign. Ways that a candidate can collect this money is by a party in which will support your campaign. You can get that money simply by asking those whom would be interested in helping out your campaign.
    There have been multiple attempts to regulate Campaign finance reforms. These attemps include the Federal Election Campaign of 1972, which required candidates to discolse sources of contributions in their campaign. In 2010, the Supreme Court ruled in a related case, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited because of the rights of free speech.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance_reform

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  10. Meg Whitman, currently running for governor of California is the perfect example for spending money on a campaign. She didn't have fundraisers to raise money for her campaign, instead she used her own money to fund her campaign. But she didn't just fund her campaign she spoiled it with not $5 million not $20 million and not even $100 million but $119 million. Meg was able to spend that much money on her campaign because she is a big piece of ebay, the popular bidding site. When i heard this it made me think what if she just donated all that money to the state of California for it to fix all the financial problems we are having such as major budget cuts in schools and to help get rid of the massive debt we are in. Doing so would make Meg Whitman look really good and in my opinion would make a whole lot more people vote for her but instead she chooses to waste her money advertising on tv and radio telling us that we should vote for her which doesn't really help. Brown on the other hand got a lot of his money by asking for donations from people that support him and he only has spent about $10 million on his campaign and the funny thing is he is doing just as well as Whitman in the campaign.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2010/09/15/whitman-bests-bloombergs-personal-spending/

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  11. California governor candidate, Meg Whitman, uses her own money to spend on her campaign due to being the billionaire CEO of eBay. So far, she has made the largest personal contribution in American campaign history with $140 million dollars. However, democratic candidate Jerry Brown has raised more money than Whitman, with $28.9 million to Whitman's $19 million. Most of Jerry Brown's money come from "left-wing Hollywood powers" while Whitman gets many donations from her business friends such as Microsoft (http://www.rightpundits.com/?p=7400).

    In campaign finance reform, recently in January of this year in the court case Citizens United vs Federal Election Comission, corporations and unions were no longer banned from supporting candidates (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance_reform_in_the_United_States).

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  12. In campaigns the candidates gain money by donations from the people, their party, and out of their own pockets. In the link you have given us it states the Meg Whitman has made a new record in campaign funds that was put in from herself. She has put in $119 million dollars which is $9 million more then Bloomberg. This is only good for herself because she is wasting good money to try to buy the peoples votes and put herself into office. All this money she puts into her campaign can be used on better ideas such as helping out the state of California. I mean if she is willing to pour all this money into her campaign and want to be the leader of California that bad she should show her true loyalty to California. Instead of wasting money on a campaign she should use it on the California problems herself. On the other hand we have Jerry brown that has not spent that much on his campaign. Only a measly $10 million and asking for donations from the people who support him. The fact that he is still very close in the race with Meg Witman shows that spending all this money on a campaign is a complete waste of good money that can be used on the state itself which brings up why the nation should establish financing limits on campaigns held at the state and higher levels.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2010/09/15/whitman-bests-bloombergs-personal-spending/

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  13. In campaigns, the candidate with more money generally has an edge over their opponent in getting their message across. They have more access to the people's everyday surroundings, such as billboards, television, newspapers, etc. Meg Whitman, a Republican candidate for California governor, has spent 119 million dollars in personal contributions, meaning her money into this campaign. Reports tell us that this spending has "surpassed the previous record of $108 million set by Bloomberg in his bid for a third term last year" and the spending shall continue until the race is over. However, this should not be entirely surprising as she was the former executive of eBay, a highly productive site in which users can purchase and sell virtually anything. On the other hand, her opponent Jerry Brown, has only spent about a small fraction, a mere 10.7 million dollars, in comparison to Whitman, and most of it coming in contributions.
    It certainly will be interesting to see who wins this election for the new governor of California, as we see whether this mass amount of money was well spent.

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  14. Money is raised in campaign elections by buying air time for T.V. advertisements, organizations, private individuals, trade unions, and public financing. The money is spent on the political process and "Correct handling of political finance impacts a country's ability to effectively maintain free and fair elections, effective governance, democratic government and regulation of corruption."
    In California's 2010 Governor Election, Meg Whitman has spent over $119,000,000 of her own private money. She is wasting others money to try to buy the peoples votes and put herself into office. Also in campaigns the candidates gain money by donations from the people, their party, and out of their own pockets.
    Now the rule in politics is: “Pay as you go.” So you really need to start fundraising as soon as possible, even before your group goes public. The strategy and quality of a campaign depends on the funds available.

    (http:en wikipedia.org/wiki/Campaign_finance_reform_in_the_United_States)

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  15. During campaign elections, candidates raise money by advertising themselves in either T.V commercials, on the internet, or by recieving donations from private organizations and/or individuals. The Candidates raise this money to use it to send their message across to people, so they can recieve their vote. "Fundraising techniques include having the candidate call or meet with large donors, sending direct mail pleas to small donors, and courting interest groups who could end up spending millions on the race if it is significant to their interests" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_campaign)
    Currently in the election for California Governor, candidate Meg Whitman has surpassed the amount that she has personally contributed to her campaign, she currently has spent 119 million dollars. On the other hand candidate Jerry Brown is slowly raising money for his campaign, and even though he has not raised millions like Whitman he is doing better with poll results than Meg Whitman. "Despite her record-breaking campaign spending of more than $150 million, including $121.5 million of her own money, Whitman has fallen behind Brown in the polls after a controversy erupted regarding her hiring and firing of undocumented Mexican immigrant Nicandra Diaz Santillan, her housekeeper from 2000 to 2009" (http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/10/12/MN6Q1FR5U3.DTL).
    This shows that regardless of the millions of dollars that a candidate spends on their campaign, it will not get the vote of the people. Voters want someone that will respond to the will of the people not someone who is spending on unneccesary ads, that dont express how they will help California

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  16. Politians should be concerned about people more than wasting money in their campaign elections, that is wasting people's money, from my point of view, politics should do more things for the people that chose them to lead the country or states, and do it in the right way.
    I agree with Caroline, if politics are spending their own money, well that's okay, it's their money they can do whatever they want with it, but using their own sponsors.
    Candidates are spending so much money trying to promote their campaigns and stuff just so people can vote for them, people don't want to see big signs and a face of a man or lady, what people want is help because this country is going trough a economic crisis now and it's going on still.

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  17. There are way less funds from the government for campaigns than there were a few years ago. Now, candidates are using a lot of private funds. Meg Whitman has used more private funds than any candidate before. I don't think their should be any government funds for campaigns. I don't even think there should be campaigns. There will always be people like Meg Whitman who have way more money, so by default they have more campaigns, and appear to be "better" to the average voter. But campaigns are 99% slander and 1% kissing babies. Its really no different than an elementary school playground, the way they audibly slaughter eachother on TV. I feel our own school elections are far more mature. I've never seen a single candidate for ASB President say anything bad about another candidate. Its because they cant. They cant spend money and campaign either, they get one equal short video and a few posters. I feel thats the best way to do it, candidates shouldn't be advertisements, they should just be candidates.

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  18. In my belief, politicians are using too much of money on political campaigns and elections but, not enough on the issues of today. For example, they should spend more money on schools or other related issues. I feel that people should promote their campaign using their own money instead of using the people of the states money. Or either find a away to promote themselves but not using a whole lot of money and being more proactive about the situation and helping others with volunteer work.

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  19. i truly find it disconcerning that a potential candidate for california's government was so comfortable with spending such lavish and rather gratuitous amounts of money on a campaign. all of which went in vain.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2010/09/15/whitman-bests-bloombergs-personal-spending/


    Her democratic opponent spent exponentially less on his successful campaign, which seems a bit ironic considering his political affiliation.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20012522-503544.html

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  20. Candidates raise money for their campaigns through donations from people who believe in them. American Constitution candidate, Tom Tancredo received donations from all 50 states in the U.S. From July to the end of September, he raised $320,220 for his campaign. $146,892 of the $320,220 he received through out-of-state donations. That's about 45.9% of the total he has raised. "Since announcing in late July he was running as the American Constitution candidate, Tancredo has raised $320,220. Of that money, $146,892 or 45.9 percent has come from out-of-state donors." (http://www.thedenverchannel.com/politics/25233282/detail.html). Tancredo said that in order to get these funds he had to travel all over the place and attempt to get people to believe in him. "'I have to go all over the place to get the contributions we need. What does it matter where it comes from as long as it's people who believe in you?' said Tancredo. 'Why would we not go to them when I run for any office and say, 'If you like what I say and do, please contribute?' And they do.'" (http://www.thedenverchannel.com/politics/25233282/detail.html).

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