Saturday, February 23, 2008

John discovers irony

John McCain can't get out of public campaign financing because the Federal Election Commission can't meet because they don't have enough members (because some Senator named Barack put a hold on a nomination...).

So Mr. Campaign Finance Reform gets tripped up by the rules he helped pass. Oops.

Unfortunately, we'll probably see Yet More Rules to fix the problems with the first set of rules. "This time, we've got Campaign Finance Reform right!", they'll say. Until the lobbyists and special interests figure out how to game the new system, and we'll be right back to where we started.

Ian Ayres and Bruce Ackerman have a much better idea for true campaign finance reform:
We think that each candidate for office should open a "blind trust" with the election authorities into which all private donors must deposit their money. Politicians will no longer be able to determine who has given how much. As a consequence, it will be impossible for them to know whom to reward with special-interest legislation.
Money buying political influence is what all the campaign finance rules are supposed to prevent, right? So why not just make campaign donations anonymous; seems like a simple, clean solution to a messy problem.

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