Posts tagged super pacs
Posts tagged super pacs
- President Barack Obama during his speech at the 2013 White House Correspondents Association Dinner.
“A new report from Public Citizen shows just how absurd it is to assume that outside groups are truly independent. Of all the major super PACs and 501(c) nonprofit groups that engaged in the 2012 election, about half backed a single candidate exclusively, effectively making themselves auxiliary organs of the candidate’s campaign, the report found.”
In 2012, we joined lots of others in coming up with a few “super PAC valentines” on Twitter. Luckily, Sunlight Foundation created a Storify. They aren’t bad…for jokes about campaign finance.
The image above is based on a a new report from US PIRG and Demos that found:
“The top 32 Super PAC donors, contributing an average of nearly $10 million each, matched all of the money that both President Obama and Mitt Romney raised from small donors combined—that’s $313 million from at least 3.7 million people giving less than $200 apiece.
“When just 32 super-rich donors can counter the voices of millions in the public square, we can’t say we live in a country of political equals.”
In addition, the analysis found that just 132 donors giving at least $1 million were responsible for 60.4% of all the money Super PACs raised in the 2012 cycle. $71.8 million of Super PAC money came from for-profit businesses.
This evidence shows that the first post-Citizens United election afforded corporations and large donors the opportunity to use their wealth to amplify their voices far beyond the volume of the average member of the general public - threatening the basic American principle of political equality - and they took full advantage.
People who say super PACs “lost” on Election Day are missing a crucial point. Nick Confessore at the New York Times sums it up:
In virtually every respect, the growth of unlimited fund-raising and the move of outside groups to the mainstream of politics have magnified the already outsize role of money in political campaigns. They have changed how incumbents and challengers alike campaign and raise money, altered how voters experience politics, and expanded the influence of a small group of large donors on the policies and messages espoused by candidates.
Candidates have to spend more time raising money to keep up with outside spending—or the threat of it—and these groups give a handful of wealthy Americans way too much power over the political process.
858 individuals donated at least $50K to super PACs this election, or what the median U.S. family made in ‘11 bit.ly/RrxV1h— Public Integrity (@Publici) November 4, 2012
“A last-minute burst of below-the-radar cash has begun flooding into the national elections, most of it financing advertising against Democrats, often in markets where television time is still cheap. But unlike the well-known outside groups that have dominated the airwaves until now, many of the new spenders did not formally exist a few weeks ago. They have generic-sounding names, rarely have Web sites and are exploiting a loophole that will keep their donors anonymous until long after the last votes are counted.”