Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Owen Likes the First Amendment

In a good discussion of the "public financed elections" concept, Owen makes clear the one immutable truth:

The truth is that there is no moral or constitutional way to prohibit people and groups from advocating in an election. If WEAC wants to spend $2 million on television ads in support of a candidate, there is no way to stop them - nor should there be. One of the quintessential American principles is that citizens have a right to speak freely about their government. This includes advocating for or against candidates for political office.

Ummmnnnnhhh...that would be called the First Amendment, no?

If a candidate’s campaign is publically funded and he is permitted to spend $300,000 and a group of citizens spends another $2 million on his behalf, how is that different from today? Is the candidate any less "beholden to special interests" than if the group did the same thing under the current rules? No, not at all. The mechanics of political campaigns will remain the same.

Corrupt politicians will remain corrupt and honorable politicians will remain honorable.

There are other well-made points in the column--it's worth the read.

No comments: