Rep. John Sarbanes (D) Maryland will soon introduce this in the House. Credit: Washington Post 7/22/12. "Where we are: The business of politics has become just that – a business. Political campaigns are no longer about connecting candidates with the people they’re running to represent in the halls of Congress.
Instead, we have a broken system where members of Congress must be fundraisers first and legislators second.
Adding to the gridlock in Congress and putting the special interests above the public interest.
The concerns of constituents at home cannot be a top priority when members must spend hours each day soliciting contributions from high-dollar donors. The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision has only made things worse.
The floodgates have been opened for millionaires, billionaires, corporations, and special interests to spend unlimited fortunes on electing their chosen candidates into office.
Cost of the average winning campaign for a seat in the House of Representatives in 2010.
The percent increase in campaign spending since 1983, which will skyrocket in the aftermath of Citizens United.
7 in 10
American voters including majorities of Republicans, Democrats and independents
who favor reform of our campaign finance system.
WHAT WE CAN DO
It’s time to build a new system that empowers the voice of the everyday voter.
We must change the incentives for both voters and candidates so that we can begin to counter the role of big money in our elections and policy making.
Grassroots Democracy Act
A three-pronged approach to pave a new way forward.
Amplify the Impact of Grassroots Donations
Give candidates an incentive to cultivate a network of small dollar supporters by offering a financial match for all grassroots donations. A 5:1 match for candidates who reject PAC money, and a 10:1 match for those who only accept grassroots donations.
Equip Americans with Democracy Dollars
$50 tax credit or voucher for Americans to use for contributions to the candidates who’d best represent their interests in federal policy.
Ensure the People’s Voice is Heard Over the Din of Unlimited Spending
Create a “People’s Fund” that ensures candidates running grassroots supported campaigns have the resources necessary to combat the unlimited spending of millionaires, billionaires, corporations, and special interests."
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