A Campaign Finance Idea Whose Time Has Come

• Mar 25, 2015

The Washington Post By: Harold Meyerson

“The need for collecting large campaign funds would vanish if Congress provided an appropriation for the proper and legitimate expenses of each of the great national parties,” President Theodore Roosevelt — that scurrilous Republican radical — told Congress in 1907.

TR’s preference for democracy over plutocracy (he also recommended banning corporations from donating to presidential campaigns) clearly doesn’t carry much weight among the five Republican-appointed justices on the Supreme Court, but there are plenty of other Americans who’d prefer a Congress less dependent on the kindness of the very rich.

If you’re one of these anti-plutocrats, Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) has a bill for you. House Resolution 20 stands no chance of passing or even coming up for a vote in the current Congress, of course, but it is nonetheless the most thoughtful proposal in years to begin to diminish the hold that big money exerts over American lawmaking.

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