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Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009) Donate to DU
 
BruinAlum Donating Member (565 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 04:56 PM
Original message
Corporate Donations to the Democratic Party and Candidates
No doubt corporations do have too much influence over the Democratic and Republican Parties and candidates. With all the cries of Nader and corporate whoredom lately a question occurs to me.

If the Democratic Party and candidates depended solely on private donations and entirely excluded donations from all corporations, PACS, and special interest groups, would they be able to compete with the Republican Party and candidates? Would an even playing ground ever be possible?

This is one dilemma I have with a strictly principled and altruistic goal if ends up forcing Democrats to play by a different set of rules and an uneven playing ground with Republicans. It takes money to run campaigns and win elections. I cant see how we could ever win any of the battles if they are using better artillery and we cant afford the weapons or the protective gear to fight them back or mount an offense. What do we really win in the end if it only gives them more of an advantage than they already have if they dont play by the same rules?

We didnt make up these rules, but the reality is these are the rules we are stuck with. I dont see how its enough to change them unilaterally if Republicans are going to continue to use them against us. Thats where I see a collision with pragmatism and reality with principles and altruism.

This is a serious question. Im not sure how this could work realistically, Im simply asking. Maybe Im nave. Please dont turn this into a pro-candidate, anti-candidate, or 3rd Party pissing match. There are plenty of other threads for that. Serious responses related to the topic only, please.
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AndyP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 05:05 PM
Response to Original message
1. I don't think we'd stand a chance
Look how much Bush racked up these past three years. I think we defiently need some sort of campaign finance reform- putting a cap on spending and donations- something small too not 145 million.
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JailForBush Donating Member (753 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 05:13 PM
Response to Original message
2. It is a bit of a Catch-22.
However, I think we should approach this from another angle. Given that an honest political party (or the lesser of evils) will never get as much corporate money as the most corrupt party, it's obvious that we can never compete on a level playing field as long as money is the critical factor. So what other factors are there?

Truth, principles and intelligence pack a powerful punch. Unfortunately, Democrats have gone way too far in compromising their principles (when not whoring for corporations and Republicans outright), and I've found it remarably tough to spread the truth regarding certain issues (notably education and Microsoft) even here at DU.

I've always maintained - and I'll continue to do so - that "electability" is the wrong path. We need to rediscover our philosophical and moral bedrock and make a stand.
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ShimokitaJer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 05:13 PM
Response to Original message
3. The money came first... then came the spending
Politicians may have always been beholden to their big donors, but the incredible amounts that are being spent in modern elections far outstrips anything that has come before. This insane spending is a relatively recent innovation, and one which certainly doesn't appear to have made elections any more "democratic." These may be the rules we seem to be stuck with now, but they are recent enough that they can still be changed.

We need EXTREME limits on donations, restrictions on bundling, and absolutely NO soft money, and we have to do it even if it seems to limit our short term effectiveness against the Republicans. Of course, the Democratic party leadership won't like this any more than the Republican party leadership will, so I don't know who we can get to work for this.
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BruinAlum Donating Member (565 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 06:01 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. How might this apply strictly to Democrats? That's basically what we're
talking about when we insist on Dem candidates that don't take donations from PAC's or special interests while Repubs are still free to do so.
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Turbineguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 05:18 PM
Response to Original message
4. When Bush got the GOP nomination
the stock market started dropping. The market has been rising as Democrats have been campaigning and Bush's ratings have been falling.

Bush sucks up to corporations and to fat cats but do they really support him in return?

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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 06:03 PM
Response to Original message
6. Right now we need the $$ however we can get it
But it is my hope that the Dem who gets in office next will put serious election reform in place, including public funding of elections.
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BruinAlum Donating Member (565 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 06:34 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. That's really what it boils down to and what I was getting at.
The Dems can't survive this unilaterally, but it has to be approached legislatively so both sides have to play by the same rules.
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The Magistrate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-04 06:34 PM
Response to Original message
8. They Would Be Unable To Compete, Sir
Money is to electioneering what bullets are to battle.

"An election differs from a civil war only as the bloodless surrender of a force outnumbered in the field differs from Waterloo."

"LET'S GO GET THOSE BUSH BASTARDS!"
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