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Sun Sep 6, 2015, 06:36 PM

Harvard law professor Larry Lessig says he's running for president

Source: The Guardian

The Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig said on Sunday his presidential exploratory committee had reached the $1m benchmark he said would trigger a formal White House bid.

The Democrat announced his fundraising total in an interview on ABC’s This Week.

Lessig said he was running to address campaign finance reform, voting rights issues and “political gerrymandering”.

Should he achieve his agenda as president, the 54-year-old South Dakota native promises to resign and let his vice-president take over. He declined to name potential vice-presidential picks when asked during the interview.



Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/06/larry-lessig-presidental-candidate-2016



He's a good professor, I don't know how he'd be as a politician.

56 replies, 4645 views

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Reply Harvard law professor Larry Lessig says he's running for president (Original post)
herding cats Sep 2015 OP
HomerRamone Sep 2015 #1
MH1 Sep 2015 #32
JudyM Sep 2015 #2
mopinko Sep 2015 #9
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #14
dsc Sep 2015 #24
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #37
brooklynite Sep 2015 #35
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #38
brooklynite Sep 2015 #45
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #47
brooklynite Sep 2015 #48
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #53
brooklynite Sep 2015 #54
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #55
JudyM Sep 2015 #17
LiberalElite Sep 2015 #3
herding cats Sep 2015 #4
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #15
herding cats Sep 2015 #19
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #20
MH1 Sep 2015 #33
Starry Messenger Sep 2015 #5
Elmer S. E. Dump Sep 2015 #56
Wash. state Desk Jet Sep 2015 #6
jtuck004 Sep 2015 #7
Le Taz Hot Sep 2015 #13
Bugenhagen Sep 2015 #22
End Of The Road Sep 2015 #8
lordsummerisle Sep 2015 #10
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #16
DJ13 Sep 2015 #23
Karma13612 Sep 2015 #36
magical thyme Sep 2015 #46
Skwmom Sep 2015 #49
Demeter Sep 2015 #11
End Of The Road Sep 2015 #12
Skwmom Sep 2015 #50
Gothmog Sep 2015 #18
nichomachus Sep 2015 #21
Rosa Luxemburg Sep 2015 #26
Arkana Sep 2015 #25
YabaDabaNoDinoNo Sep 2015 #27
Sunlei Sep 2015 #28
Divernan Sep 2015 #29
End Of The Road Sep 2015 #31
Skwmom Sep 2015 #51
brooklynite Sep 2015 #52
davidpdx Sep 2015 #30
Divernan Sep 2015 #34
End Of The Road Sep 2015 #40
Divernan Sep 2015 #42
End Of The Road Sep 2015 #44
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #41
freedom fighter jh Sep 2015 #39
olddots Sep 2015 #43

Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 06:50 PM

1. Has he heard of Sanders

or O'Malley?

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Response to HomerRamone (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 08:20 AM

32. I'm quite certain he has. nt.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 06:54 PM

2. Wait... What?! He'll give up the office of prez once he achieves voting and finance reform??

That's a pretty wild platform. Creative. Wonder how he'll handle issues unrelated to those ... In a debate.

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Response to JudyM (Reply #2)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:13 PM

9. that is a very strange promise.

 

very strange. why would you vote for someone who promises to quit?
and obviously, he isnt paying attention. in 2 terms obama has barely scratched the surface.

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Response to mopinko (Reply #9)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:39 PM

14. He says he'll do it by making reform more than top priority,

by making it his *only* priority until it's done -- and then he quits. He calls this a "referendum presidency." Once he's passed his reforms, it becomes easier to get good stuff through Congress.

I believe he also said he'll drop out of the race if one of the Democratic frontrunners (Hillary or Bernie) will agree to make finance reform her or his only priority until it's done.

The best way this can work, I think, is if Hillary or Bernie takes him up on his offer. But I don't know if that works for either of them.

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Response to freedom fighter jh (Reply #14)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 11:39 PM

24. that would be the dumbest idea ever

Why in God's name would any Republican, even one who liked the idea of campaign finance reform cooperate with either Clinton or Sanders on it, if they could make sure nothing got done at all by simply stopping campaign finance reform?

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Response to dsc (Reply #24)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:07 AM

37. Good point.

But the plan may work if enough decent people get elected to Congress. With this unconventional candidate bringing new energy into the system, maybe enough people who don't usually vote will come out and vote for decent people for Congress so that it can work.

By "decent people" I mean people who would not obstruct just for the sake of obstructing, the kind why at would, ask you say, "make sure nothing got done" just because it isn't their party making it happen. That's the kind of people who dominate now, but one hopes that can change.

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Response to freedom fighter jh (Reply #14)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 09:54 AM

35. Good to know that nothing else will be coming up in the months/years until he achieves his goal...

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #35)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:09 AM

38. Doesn't mean nothing else happens.

His plan means *he doesn't start* anything new until this happens. He works with the VP, who is soon to be press, on stuff that comes up.

Putting other things aside is a sacrifice, but it may be what has to happen for anything to get done at all.

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Response to freedom fighter jh (Reply #38)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 01:29 PM

45. You can't put off a natural disaster, a refugee crisis, an economic collapse...

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #45)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 01:55 PM

47. Right.

He won't start new things other than his reform package.

He will deal with what happens.

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Response to freedom fighter jh (Reply #47)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:31 PM

48. In which case, he better to be prepared to explain HOW he is qualified to deal with those things...

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #48)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:49 PM

53. Yes, he does need to do that, just like any other presidential candidate.

Since the plan is to have the VP serve most of the term, I'm guessing that when something other than reform needs to be dealt with, the referendum press will work in consultation with the VP and decide in accordance with the VP's policies, since that is what the people will have voted for.

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Response to freedom fighter jh (Reply #53)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:58 PM

54. Doe expect him to find a someone who is effectively a serious Presidential candidate to serve as VP?

...or can we acknowledge that this is a stunt?

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #54)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 03:05 PM

55. You can acknowledge whatever you want.

He said if gets the nomination he will set up a process to find the Democrat who best represents the people's will and will choose that person as VP. He can't just choose the second-place candidate, because his (Lessig's) presence would have distorted the vote. For example, if the second place candidate is Bernie, Lessig will have to consider the possibility that if the contest had been between Bernie and Hillary, Hillary might have won -- but she's in third place because so many of her votes went to Lessig. He said he would work out a process.

That person would agree to serve as VP because (1) At that point in the process Lessig has the nomination, so Hillary or Bernie can't get it anyway; and (2) The plan would be for Lessig's VP candidate to serve most of the term.

I think what Lessig really wants is to get one or preferably both of the two front-running Democrats to agree to deal with campaign finance before starting anything else. He said if either one of them does, he'll end his candidacy.

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Response to mopinko (Reply #9)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:51 PM

17. Right. Rethugs will be fighting him tooth and nail, plus internationally, anything can happen

that will pull him off course.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 06:55 PM

3. Lawrence who?

Sanders is a household name compared with this guy.

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Response to LiberalElite (Reply #3)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 07:13 PM

4. I agree.

I think he's an interesting person and I'd love to see his thoughts against gerrymandering brought forward even more, but as I said, I don't know how he'd be as a politician. I doubt he'll even make it into any debates. Which I'm not sure is a good thing, yet it's the truth of matters. He's smart, and excellent on some topics. He could help to advance the general discussion even more toward the populous message.

As a world leader, though? I just don't see him fitting into that mold. No matter the depth of respect I hold for Professor Lessig and his reasons behind this decision. I doubt his run will have any real legs.

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Response to herding cats (Reply #4)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:42 PM

15. I think his plan is to rely heavily on his VP during his (Lessig's) short term in office.

Lessig wants to do his reform and then get out. That makes the choice of VP very important. Except for emergencies, Lessig will do nothing but his reform. Anything else that must be done will be decided by the VP, who, after all, will be taking over the presidency in a short time. Err, if I have that right.

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Response to freedom fighter jh (Reply #15)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 10:03 PM

19. I don't think he ever plans on actually getting into the presidency.

My take on him is it's all about the message.

I suspect his intentions are honorable and not self-serving.. He's about the message. Equal right to vote, equal representation and citizen funded elections. He can, and has, spoken on these topics at great length before. He has no reason to be politic about an issue, because he's not a politician.

I can't see him as a politician, and I don't think he plans on actually being one. My guess is he wants to add the power of his voice to those of us who recognize the need for change due to the corruption within our current system. Which is an amazing strong point of his.

He wants to educate us, help ignite the fire of change under us, not rule us. He's a brilliant mind and an interesting speaker. Who better to lecture us on what's wrong in our current society without fear of political fallout? What he was lacking was a platform where people from all walks of life might be inclined to listen.

He says things even Bernie can't say as a politician, but once they're brought out in the open all our candidates will be free to opine on them as they see fit.

I'd like to hear from him. I really hope we get a chance to have his voice be heard.

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Response to herding cats (Reply #19)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 10:09 PM

20. Yes, I think he will improve the discussion. nt

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Response to herding cats (Reply #19)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 08:25 AM

33. Well said. That's pretty much my take, too.

Lessig has been a thought leader for years on these type of issues, and his name is well known in intellectual circles. I think he is trying to get these topics into the discussion in a more serious way than they ever have been addressed before ... more serious than any mainstream candidate will ever address them. It will be interesting to see how successful he is with this approach. But in any case I would love to hear him debate these issues with the other candidates.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 07:18 PM

5. I can't know what to think of him until I've seen his logo.

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Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #5)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 03:53 PM

56. Here you go!

 

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 07:22 PM

6. As the saying goes ,those that cannot do ,teach.

Interesting approach to stepping out for a professor . A way to get out there,breath the air of independence,out there in the world as it is complete with an exit strategy ! Interesting !

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Response to Wash. state Desk Jet (Reply #6)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 07:46 PM

7. I would be happy for any ass clown that thinks that to take over my sister's classroom. 1 day. n/t

 

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Response to jtuck004 (Reply #7)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:33 PM

13. +1

People like that have NO idea. None.

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Response to Wash. state Desk Jet (Reply #6)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 10:45 PM

22. You embarrass yourself.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 08:04 PM

8. i do recognize the name...

...from several documentaries about Aaron Swartz, most particularly "The Internet's Own Boy".

I just popped over to Lessig's blog and yes, he has heard of Bernie Sanders and has much respect for him.

I suspect that Lessig, if he can get any coverage at all, will raise thoughtful issues about fairness and inclusion in political process and corruption in our democracy that a lot of Dems will like to hear. I don't have a clue where he stands on foreign policy other than he's not a hawk.

Take some time, as i will, to wiki him and wade through his blog. This is a fundamentally good, caring, and very smart guy a la Jimmy Carter, but unlikely to be our next prez.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:16 PM

10. Maybe there's some hidden agenda here

because he'd be a lot more useful if he just supported Bernie who shares the same belief on money and politics and has a thriving campaign underway...

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Response to lordsummerisle (Reply #10)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:50 PM

16. Lessig believes the reform he seeks can be achieved only . . .

. . . if it is president's *only* project until it passes. Once it passes, accomplishing other good things will become much easier. Bernie talks about campaign finance reform, but he has not said he'll drop everything else until reform happens.

I think Lessig's approach makes sense, given how hard it is to get anything reasonable through Congress. If the brake shoe is rubbing against the rim of your bicycle wheel, you choice is to stop and fix it or to put a whole lot more energy into pedaling. If it's rubbing hard and you have more than a few feet left on your trip, you'll get where you're going quicker if you stop and fix the brake. Congress members' indebtedness to their donors is such a drag on Congress that other things we need can't get passed.

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Response to lordsummerisle (Reply #10)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 11:18 PM

23. I think he's going to end up helping Bernie

The two of them will triangulate their messages about corporate money influencing our political system, taking aim directly at Hillary's campaign to show where her allegiances will lie.

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Response to DJ13 (Reply #23)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:01 AM

36. Interesting..... I like this reasoning. nt

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Response to DJ13 (Reply #23)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 01:45 PM

46. I think he will have zero impact. Why would anybody take him seriously?

 

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Response to lordsummerisle (Reply #10)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:34 PM

49. Well, hidden agenda aside, I think it would split the anti-establishent vote


and benefit Clinton.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:22 PM

11. Why? Why are he doing this? It's NUTS.

 

The stuff he wants to do, he should run for Congress.

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Response to Demeter (Reply #11)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:33 PM

12. no, it's brilliant.

If elected on a single issue, that's a citizen mandate to fix the corruption in campaign financing so everyone's vote matters. Then he steps down for VP to become pres. Think of a Lessig-Sanders ticket. You fix a big issue and end up with Bernie anyway. PLEASE watch videos at lessigforpresident.com. It's simply brilliant, and he's a great guy. You will like what you hear.

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Response to End Of The Road (Reply #12)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:35 PM

50. So splitting voters betwen Sanders and Lessig would give us a Lessig-Sanders ticket?

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 09:55 PM

18. This will be an interesting campaign

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2015, 10:21 PM

21. Lessig is a self-important douchebag

I've had one encounter with him. Hope I never have another. Asshole.

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Response to nichomachus (Reply #21)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 01:01 AM

26. He's wasting his time running

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 12:06 AM

25. Sorry, but the office of Presidency isn't just some gig.

You don't get to be a referendum President, especially considering that Congress will NEVER touch a CFR bill.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 06:32 AM

27. Well good luck with that Professor

 

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 06:53 AM

28. campaign finance reform, voting rights issues & political gerrymandering, very good additions to

discussions. 3 Topics todays Republicans hate to face.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 07:06 AM

29. He'll dilute the impact/quality of Dem. primary debates

by taking time from Bernie's hammering on real issues. Of course, it will help Clinton, since it will reduce her time being forced to answer questions she's been successfully ducking, dodging and avoiding so far.

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Response to Divernan (Reply #29)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 08:07 AM

31. Allowing the 1% to decide what's best for you isnt a real issue?

Lessig wants yours and my vote to carry as much weight as that of a wealthy contributor. Until that's fixed, many of the other real, progressive issues won't get a hearing.



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Response to Divernan (Reply #29)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:37 PM

51. Exactly.


They said he has to only get to 1% and with the corporate media promoting him, he will make it.

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Response to Divernan (Reply #29)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 02:42 PM

52. Just a guess, but he won't be in them...

...where do you imagine he'll get anything close to a decent polling result to warrant being included?

And if your argument is that he deserve to be in the debates, what about the 85 or so other candidates who have registered with the FEC as Democrats?

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 07:51 AM

30. I agree with Lessig's ideas about campaign finance reform and think it is important

that every Democratic candidate for president agree. There is no way he's got enough support, but getting the idea out there and making sure people are talking about it is enough.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 09:52 AM

34. Fascinating comments on this story from the Guardian

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/06/larry-lessig-presidental-candidate-2016

bcarey Boredwiththeusa
34m ago
So far, I haven't been able to find the sources of his funding. Anyone know where it is reported (if it has been reported).

Hope it's not from a Clinton superpac.

Every new democratic candidate must be scrutinized very carefully now. Hillary wants those delegates, whatever it takes. Running a fake candidate whose only real purpose would be to endorse her at the Democratic convention is not out of the question.... which is exactly what Biden would be.


Cayce Jones
16h ago
Does Lessig say more about how he would achieve these objectives? Any Democrat who is elected President may be able to nominate Supreme Court Justices. If the Court's alignment shifts left, they would reverse the Court's decisions that gutted the Voting Rights Act and found for Citizens.
How would gerrymandering be stopped except by an Act of Congress?
All of the Democratic candidates are proposing changes that they can't accomplish on their own. Maybe they have to do so to pander to an uninformed electorate who want angels to save them. If they said, "With the help of Congress, I will ..." it would be more realistic.


USAteacher
18h ago
DNC had to find a leftist that kinda looks like Bernie Sanders. Must keep the corprate gods in power by splitting the Bernie vote so Pillary can win. Good luck on that idea. $1,000,000 could have fed a lot of hungry people or housed a lot of homeless, now its just money wasted to over paid IT workers so they can advocate for a person they dont support themselves. Feel the Bern!


bcarey
3h ago
Lessig is an interesting character. He has been supporting Donald Trump.

“Donald Trump is the biggest gift to the movement for reform since the Supreme Court gave us Citizens United,” said Lessig in a recent interview, referring to the court decision that riled up liberals by granting essentially unlimited campaign contributions from corporate entities. “What he’s saying is absolutely correct, the absolute truth. He has pulled back the curtain.”

There are many sources online about his support of Trump. He has also said that he would consider running as the VP candidate with Trump if Trump was to decide to run as an Independent.

That being said, Lessig, running as a Democrat, might be an excellent VP choice for Sanders.

But, first, he has to fall out of love with Trump.

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Response to Divernan (Reply #34)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:14 AM

40. Funding has been from Mayday SuperPAC (nt)

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Response to End Of The Road (Reply #40)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:34 AM

42. Is there a link to the sources of the $million form this SuperPac?

It has an interesting history.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/06/mayday-pac-2014_n_6109992.html

But I'd like to see who the most recent donors are re size of donation and corporate/political affiliations of donors.

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Response to Divernan (Reply #42)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 11:21 AM

44. Actually

Some or perhaps most of those donations may have gone directly to his exploratory committee. His website says $1,038,589 from 8529 donors. As for names of donors, we may have to wait for FEC filing.

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Response to Divernan (Reply #34)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:17 AM

41. He's not really in love with Trump.

Trump *did* pull back the curtain when he said Hillary had to do what he wanted because he had given her money. That's the way the system works, the system that Lessig wants to change, and a candidate who comes out and says that is indeed a gift to the reform movement, because no one else who gets that much national attention will be that explicit about it.

That does not mean Lessig likes Trump.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:12 AM

39. His formal announcement will be the day after tomorrow . . .

at about noon.

Check it out here.

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Response to herding cats (Original post)

Mon Sep 7, 2015, 10:49 AM

43. is this a lead in for a remake of The Paper Chase ?

 

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