Propose Amendments to the Constitution All the ideas and discussions
49 votes Vote

Government funding only for political campaigns

Make government funding available to all candidates running for office, disallowing the use of non-governmental money as a part of any political campaign, placing all candidates on a more even playing field.

Josh Musket , 21.10.2011, 16:10
Idea status: under consideration


DMFairchild, 21.10.2011, 19:51
How would you propose doing this? What limits would you place on the amount of funding? How would this affect issue advocacy group funding? What about political party adds?

I agree with your concept just trying to nail down some of the details.
Josh Musket, 21.10.2011, 20:47
Well, I can't give you much in the way of answers, this is an issue that would have to be hacked out more. I would say that funding might be provided on something like a capped grant system, scaled by what media the campaign is being conducted on (TV, radio, Newspaper, Internet, door-to-door), what type of race (local, state, etc), how many staffers allowed. I think man-hours should be taken into account in some manner, since a large amount of volunteers could potentially have more impact than money, under the right circumstances.

As for issue advocacy, I don't think it would or should affect that, unless they're specifically endorsing a candidate/party - which shouldn't be allowed. Maybe there should be another proposal dealing with the legitimacy of issue-ads, though.

As for political party ads, I would say they should be banned under this. However, I do think that it should might be useful to mandate that television and possibly other media (such as Radio and Newspapers) run run ads in a block and possibly help each party produce them, with government reimbursement.
edward machnik, 18.12.2011, 02:14
You must be kidding, finding more things for Congress to spend money on!!!! By the way, it is our money!

Campaign financing is Free Speech and should not be controlled by Congress at all. Money does not buy a Presidency, if it did, Ross Perot would have been the President.
Josh Musket, 18.12.2011, 17:26
Uh, no... I'm not kidding. Funding itself is not speech, it's funding. The speech that it funds is speech. And even if the money itself were speech, do you want the banks and other corporations to have the most to say about who gets elected? Because if you do some research you will find that they are the major contributors to the last presidential campaign in regards to both democrats and republicans.

Nowhere did I claim that money buys a Presidency, but lack of money can be used to exclude good candidates from the race. This idea is to level the playing field to "to all candidates running for office," not just those running for president, but other offices too, on down to your local city council.

All taxes are our money and as such they should go towards supporting our best interests. Truly representative democracy is in out best interest. This would help with that.
edward machnik, 18.12.2011, 18:02
You are hopelessly literal. Campaign financing allows Free Speech in campaign commerticials and the like. I do want the banks and corporations to have the apportunity to spend on behave of their employees who are PEOPLE too. Before a corporation throws money at a candidate, they must decide if the candidate has a chance top win.
This idea of a level playing field, i.e. FAIRNESS is absurd! Someone will benefit, maybe a marginal candidate. No thanks.

Your proposal will require more taxes, since congress will NEVER divert money from their special interest groups. Please do not encourage Congress to tax, since they now have uncontrolled POWER to do so.
Josh Musket, 18.12.2011, 18:11
I can see that no matter how reasonable my arguments may be, they won't convince you. Go troll elsewhere.
edward machnik, 18.12.2011, 18:17
You would like to limit my FREE SPEECH. I am not trolling but telling you where you are WRONG. I do not want more taxes to pay for your folly.

And Fairness is in the eyes of the beholder. Ain't happening.

Your proposal would fund every wacky group who can find a candidate. Another Big Government handout.
Josh Musket, 19.12.2011, 02:47
In no way is your free speech being limited, obviously - you continued to blather. I am not wrong, but I also choose not to engage you and your fallacious reasoning and broken premises. Even if I explained to you why you are wrong, you would refuse to see the logic of my position. As I said, go troll elsewhere, I'm finished indulging you.
edward machnik, 19.12.2011, 03:44
In typical liberal fashion, you want to take your baseball bat and go home; as well as resorting to name calling.

You are creating another BIG GOVERNMENT beauracracy allowing them to distribute tax dollars to fund every fringe group imaginable. Pure folly.
edward machnik, 19.12.2011, 04:02
Think about the name of your proposed Amendment, i.e. "Government Funding".

The elections will be further politicized by allowing "THE GOVERNMENT" to decide who gets what money.

This is a VERY bad idea. As a conservative, I want to stop the ever growing encroachment of BIG GOVERNMENT in our lives.
GabeDowney, 20.01.2012, 15:22
I for one could not agree more strongly with this proposal. It is indisputably clear that the size of one's wallet, be they an individual, organization, or corporation amplifies there free speech disproportionately. The American Government has abdicated its responsibility to insure that the best ideas win the day. It is time to invest in our democracy, and to eliminate our pervasive elements of corruption.

As for the specific concerns raised above, I propose the following in conjunction with this much needed and warranted idea:

1. Initial funding amounts would be equal to 1/4th the average for all campaigns at that level (Congressional, Senate, Presidential), per state or district, for the final campaign held under current rules. All subsequent elections would use the 1/4th total as a baseline and that amount would be pegged to inflation.
2. Issue Advocacy groups would be unaffected at large, but would be barred from any radio or television advertisements six weeks prior to any federal election. Internet advertising is still immature enough to be a relatively minor issue, but might need addressed for future consideration.
3. Political party adds would likewise be disallowed six weeks prior to any federal election.

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