Corporate Campaigning

The recent Supreme Court decision seems to be a big deal. Corporations clearly have enough political power, but is the answer to stifle their speech through direct regulation?

As I’m sure you’ve heard, the Supreme Court ruled that Corporations and Unions have the right to campaign without restriction on spending and without limitations on when they may do so.

This worries a lot of people, and not without reason: corporations already spend so much money lobbying that our laws are looking more and more like Swiss cheese.  The reforms that are sorely needed, like healthcare reform, are stifled.  Banks aren’t held accountable.

But the fix isn’t to keep trying to restrict their speech.  It hasn’t worked, and even a Constitutional amendment would do little to solve the real problem of corporate influence.

Instead of traditional regulations, Congress ought tax corporate campaign efforts.  This is guaranteed to be legal, and will help to balance the budget. It will help keep the spending in check, especially if the tax is proportional to the amount spent.

They should also enact requirements on public availability of any and all corporate (and union) campaign materials from their time of publishing up to six weeks after the election(s) they target.  These materials should be made available on the internet and via a prominent address listed with said materials (mailed copies should be available at cost of reproduction/shipping only).

This availability regulation will allow any and all citizens full access to analyze and thereby construct their own rebuttals, critiques, and responses to the corporate lines.

There are better ways to fix our problems than outright bans.


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