Thursday, February 02, 2006

The Momentum Is Growing!!!

We are gaining momentum and the move is on! Thanks to your help, we have made a mighty impact and it is only going to grow stronger. Here is an article by George Skelton of the LA Times...
Bill Would Give the Public More Power to Buy Politicians
Legislators adamantly opposed to public financing of political campaigns — mainly conservatives — argued that citizens' liberties would be trampled. Besides, it wouldn't work: There's just no way to keep private money away from public policy.

Liberals decried the special-interest influence on policymaking and warned about the public's increasingly cynical view of politics and government. The solution: an infusion of public money to zap the clout of private investors.

Old stuff, with a new wrinkle: This time, a bill creating virtually a 100% public financing system for state political races was passed by the Assembly on a mostly party-line vote, 48 to 31, and sent to the Senate.

To be sure, this was the equivalent of a grade school "social promotion," where a student is passed and sent to the next higher class without really earning it. Tuesday was the legislative deadline for passing bills from their original house, so some Democrats closed their eyes Monday and waved this measure along, hoping it would just disappear on the south side of the Capitol rotunda.

Still, this was not a meaningless move. It marked a significant step toward urgently needed campaign finance reform — toward the people, rather than the private interests, buying the politicians.

"Everybody's worn out by this incessant fund-raising, the ceaseless dialing for dollars" the bill's author, Assemblywoman Loni Hancock (D-Berkeley), told me. "Everybody knows that it skews the system. Who do we work for? The people pay our salary. But then we are dependent on special interests to get elected."

Her solution — a product of the California Clean Money Campaign — would be strictly voluntary. Candidates could opt to let the public pay for their campaigns if they agreed to very tight spending limits. There'd be exceptions for candidates being trampled by big-bucks bullies.

You can read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.