Posted by 07 October 2019
It’s no secret that Sen. Bernie Sanders is not a fan of corporations. Now he’s targeting what he calls “corporate money” in politics in his quest for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Today Sen. Sanders announced a plan to, in his words, “get corporate money out of politics.” Among other things, his proposal would:
- Ban corporations from donating to presidential inauguration events and cap individual donations to these events at $500.
- Push for a constitutional amendment to overturn the Citizens United Supreme Court decision and enable Congress to pass legislation mandating that advocacy organizations report their donors to the government.
- Create the Federal Elections Agency, which would be empowered to levy criminal fines for campaign finance violations and be staffed by members that serve 6-year terms.
- Mandate government financing for federal elections.
- Create government-funded vouchers that would be provided to individuals in order to make campaign donations.
- Prohibit ads during presidential primary debates.
- Ban former members of Congress and administration officials from ever lobbying.
Sen. Sanders would also prohibit the Democratic National Convention from receiving corporate donations.
According to Sen. Sanders, corporations have too much influence over politicians, so his plan would curtail that influence. He says it is necessary to reduce the power of corporations to write laws that benefit themselves and not the people. Opponents counter that his plan would be a massive government expansion over individuals who want to have their voices heard in the political process. They argue that his plan would put more government control over politics, something that will only help incumbents.
Other candidates for the Democratic nomination have suggested similar ideas for campaign finance reform, but none have been as comprehensive or as restrictive as the plan outlined by Sen. Sanders.
Do you think that the Constitution should be amended to overturn Citizens United? Should there be government-funded vouchers given to individuals so they can make campaign donations?