Thursday, October 30, 2008

Campaign Spending

I haven’t followed this subject with much interest so I’ll side with Michael on the substance but trust Stephanie that Senator Obama left himself an out on the issue. I’ve also got no problem with Senator Obama having raised so much money so long as done properly (another subject). Having said that, I wonder if VDH is right about future campaigns. I don’t think the issue is dead. If it comes up again in four or eight years and the financial shoe is on the other foot, the media will still howl:

The $600 million that Obama amassed and abject rejection of public campaign financing. There are three problems: (1) the breaking of one’s word; (2) the creation of such a vast treasure chest; (3) and the complete destruction of the principle of public financing. Never again, will one on the Left make the credible argument either that there is a poisonous nexus between big money and big politics, or that the government should step in to ensure that special interests do not exercise an inordinate influence. So Obama essentially destroyed the idea of public campaign financing of national elections. It’s dead, kaput—over with for good. And the media simply skipped that latter story. (Again, imagine the media’s reaction should McCain have flipped on the issue, rejected public financing, raised a $600 million war-chest, outspent Obama 4-1, and now was airing 30-minute infomercials unanswered by the poorer, and public financed Obama.)

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

I suspect that Obama's fundraising success is not the start of a trend for Dems, but rather the result of having a rare, spectacular candidate. We won't manage it again any time soon. And I think the participation of small donors is exactly what we'd want for campaign finance.