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Election spending

April 20, 2011 - Blaine Hyska
When will America wake up?

We constantly complain about our lawmakers, and the elections, but we never do anything about it.

The problem is money. There’s way too much cash influence in our system.

You can’t tell me that an elected official doesn’t answer the phone when the big money donor calls. If you or I call, we’re lucky to get an actual human on the line.

We’re usually prompted by a machine to leave a message.

Take, for example, the Wisconsin Supreme Court race. According to campaign spending reports, outside groups spent $4.5 million in the two weeks leading up to the election.

Counting the primary, some $5.4 million was spent on the election. Liberal and conservative groups poured buckets of cash into this race.

For the record, incumbent Justice David Prosser edged state attorney JoAnne Kloppenburg by just 7,316 votes.

Why on earth would so many people give money to election campaigns? Influence.

As long as politicians need money for their elections, there will be outside influence. They’ll always have a soft spot for the donor with the $10,000 check.

And that leads to special tax breaks for this group, and special grants for that group. No wonder we’ve got a zillion-dollar deficit.

Bottom line: We need to take the money out of our system. As unpopular as it sounds, we should have public-funded elections.

We’ve tried the system of private donations — and we’ve failed.



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