Posted 8/15/12 by Common Good
In an article for America the Fixable at The Atlantic, Ron Faucheux, Senior Consultant for Common Good and President of the Clarus Research Group, observes, “Insanity is doing something over and over, but expecting a different result. That pretty well describes campaign finance reform in America. The worse the system gets, the more we regulate it. The more we regulate it, the worse it gets.”
Faucheux says, “Over the last four decades, the campaign finance system has become a Rube Goldberg-esque contraption of complex, senseless, and indecipherable regulations.” To fix it, he proposes eliminating campaign contribution caps.
Caps on campaign donations were intended to “keep wealthy individuals... from dropping millions into campaign treasuries” but with billionaires contributing millions into Super PACs, these limits have not succeeded, argues Faucheux. “Contribution caps have given birth to a lot of the things today's editorial writers and good-government types detest, including super PACs and, of course, the new whipping boy of campaign finance--the misunderstood Citizens United Supreme Court ruling.”
In addition to eliminating contribution caps, Faucheux also proposes full disclosure of all political donations and expenditures and reinstituting the $50 campaign-contribution income-tax credit that existed between 1972 and 1986.
Read the rest of Faucheux’s proposal here.
"America the Fixable" is an online magazine collaboration between The Atlantic and Common Good. It provides a bipartisan forum for the presentation of bold, new ideas to reform America's governmental and legal system—ideas that need to be part of the 2012 debate.