The perception that political operatives and wealthy donors are skirting contribution limits — as they are — creates the aura of corruption and even criminality. Super PACs also seem to make candidates’ campaigns less accountable. The fact that all this is an exercise of First Amendment rights is simply ignored. The paradox is that campaign financial “reform,” far from allaying public suspicion of the political system, deepens it.
Samuelson is usually awful, but this is something I can get behind. Campaign finance laws are terrible and put in place with no thought to a goal. What’s worse is the general population doesn’t understand campaign finance anyway so things like PAC’s and donations are looked upon nefariously and without understanding. Smart people, like Robert Reich, even get it confused. the occupation of the donor is attributed to the donation to the candidate, thereby making the candidate beholden to said industry, instead of any particular reason held by the donor himself. Don’t even get me started on the allegedly new evil of the “Super-PAC.”
Dispose of everything except a vehicle for campaigns and monthly federal disclosure rules.