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Maine, Seattle Pave Next Path For Campaign Finance Reform

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posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:06 PM
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Maine, Seattle Pave Nextg Path For Campaign Finance Reform


Voters in Seattle and Maine went to the polls Tuesday night and supported ballot initiatives to reform their campaign finance laws and expand the role of small donors in elections.

Maine voters backed by 55 percent an initiative that updated their system of publicly financed elections. The initiative will make it possible for candidates receiving public funds to compete better in the landscape created after two Supreme Court decisions tightened restrictions on public funding and flooded elections with unlimited independent spending.

In Seattle, voters backed a sweeping measure to enact public financing of the city’s elections by a vote of 60 percent to 40 percent. The measure will create a first-of-its-kind system of publicly funded “democracy vouchers” to be distributed to citizens to donate to candidates participating in the public funding system. Each citizen will be able to distribute four $25 vouchers to participating candidates. This goes along with a raft of other campaign finance, disclosure, ethics and lobbying reforms also included in the initiative.

The passage of both measures signals a new front in the effort to reform and democratize campaign finance. Since the 2010 Citizens United decision opened the door to unlimited election spending by corporations, unions and, following a subsequent lower court ruling, wealthy individuals, public distaste for the role of big money in politics has increased dramatically. At the same time, avenues for reform at the federal level have shrunk as Congress and the Supreme Court are controlled by conservatives opposed to reform.


Hell yeah! Eff Citizens United! One of the most unpatriotic and corrupt rulings in Supreme Court history. I'm glad that people are taking to their grievances to the state level and showing their distaste for this ruling.


As evidenced by the successes in Maine and Seattle on Tuesday, the effort to take the reform agenda to the states -- and directly to the people -- is succeeding. Another victory came in San Francisco, where voters passed a lobbying reform proposition that lays the groundwork for further changes. These reform wins follow on the heels of the 2014 vote in Tallahassee, Florida, to enact a limited public financing system in the city and reform lobbying and ethics laws.

“Local, grassroots victories are how we fix our corrupt political system,” Josh Silver, director of Represent.Us, an anti-corruption group that backed the initiatives and propositions that passed on Tuesday, said in a statement. “Together we are building a movement, from the ground up, and fighting for a future where political outcomes are decided by the best ideas, not the biggest bank accounts.”


And the best part, here's the key to their success:


Instead of focusing on passing initiatives that seek to limit, reformers are pushing policies to increase the role of small donors and non-donors in the funding of elections through public financing. These policies are often combined, as was the case in Seattle, with a package of ethics and lobbying reforms supported by conservative voters also concerned about the imbalance in government favoring the wealthy and well-connected.


That's right, instead of reducing benefits, they are seeking to bring other means of campaign financing to wealthy levels. This has the two pronged effect of helping get the little guy's voice out there and also not getting the ire of the wealthy as losing their unfair advantage (though I still think Citizen's United needs to be overturned).




posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:17 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

So great except that the amount of vouchers allocated, number of voters and the money for that do not add up even closely. Horrible system, I'm from Seattle. Everything the mayor does here is horribly implemented and wastes millions of dollars. Yet the morons keep voting yes.



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:18 PM
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a reply to: DrakeINFERNO

I'm confused, this looks like it was just voted on. How do you have experience with how it is supposed to work already?



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:20 PM
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a reply to: [post=19994211]Krazysh0t[/post

Because as everything that is voted on has details and the details do not pass scrutiny. You think they redact all the info on what you vote on? Don't be dense.



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:22 PM
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Also say a union or group can decide where they want their members vouchers to go.

edit on 4-11-2015 by DrakeINFERNO because: party



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:29 PM
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a reply to: DrakeINFERNO

The way you typed that first response to me was like you already had experience with how this new bill is supposed to work. Now it looks like you are just arguing based off your jadedness based on local Washington politics.



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:34 PM
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Lol ok no point to respond to you. Jadedness'? How much research have you put into this? Read an article and how you are a pro. You brought up my local politics then say its not relevant?

I have been interested in this for a month because it affects my region.



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:40 PM
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a reply to: DrakeINFERNO

I'm not an expert. I'm asking you questions because you said you are from the area. Isn't that how discussions are supposed to go? I'm just not looking for an opinion based on bias and contempt for politics. If you have experience with the area, then tell me why THIS bill is flawed.



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:43 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Standby ill have to gather the numbers I got.

Everyone has to pay into the bill yet only the first 13% of vouchers will be the only amount redeemed. One must know about the political money pit that is Seattle and the 2 issues cannot be separated.

In what way is this bill good?
edit on 4-11-2015 by DrakeINFERNO because: info

edit on 4-11-2015 by DrakeINFERNO because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 06:32 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t




Hell yeah! Eff Citizens United! One of the most unpatriotic and corrupt rulings in Supreme Court history.


How about actualy READING Citizens United eh?



The United States Supreme Court held that the First Amendment prohibited the government from restricting independent political expenditures by a nonprofit corporation. The principles articulated by the Supreme Court in the case have also been extended to for-profit corporations, labor unions and other associations.


en.wikipedia.org...

Hell yeah people voting on things they have no clue about, or even, and interesting finding out the REAL FACTS ?

That's deserves a face palm of the three stooge kind.



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 07:04 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

im usually pretty critical of some of the whackadoo political movements that come out of Seattle. Great place, great people, amazing musical history...but sometimes a little out there politically (not always, or even usually).

This is an interesting move. It really does ensure all individuals have equal voice.

I think that economically speaking there are some terrible ideas coming out of there. But it really is starting to look like a "Human Party" may emerge. To that, I can only be hopeful and raise a



posted on Nov, 5 2015 @ 06:48 AM
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a reply to: neo96

So what? Eff Citizen's United. I'm sorry that you support corruption in politics, but I don't. No matter WHERE the source of it comes from.



posted on Nov, 5 2015 @ 06:51 AM
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a reply to: DrakeINFERNO

Hey, I'm not trying to suggest that this bill is going to uproot corruption completely or anything. I mean, don't you at least think it is a step in the right direction?



posted on Nov, 6 2015 @ 05:29 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

the campaign was funded greatly by out of state money so im not optimistic.



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