GOP Campaign Financing
Republican Party candidates for major offices come in three basic varieties these days — right, far right, and out-of-sight right. What I find especially interesting about this mix is how nicely campaign financial arrangements of these three reflect these ideologies.
Right republicans, for example, are generally party regulars with pro-business, pro-Wall Street, pro-social conservative views. Their primary objective is to keep a job in Washington or win one by saying nasty things about Democrats without offering any real solutions to the nation’s many serious problems. They like the institutions of government and don’t want to change them, they merely want to control them so as to better gift their traditional constituencies. And their primary source of funding thus comes from campaign committees and traditional interest groups.
The far right Republicans are the Tea Party-sponsored candidates, whose ideology has a strong Libertarianism edge. One might therefore expect to see more entrepreneurial approaches in their campaign financing, and this appears to be the case. This entrepreneurial spirit inclines a number of them to tap their campaign chests for personal living expenses, suggesting that win or lose, they view campaigning rather than serving in government as a desirable career option.
The out-of-sight right Republican candidates tend to be loud mouth boors who happen to have a lot of money and a desire for a larger audience than the country club help who must endure their rants in hopes of decent tips. They have no discernible programs to make the country better and no discernible credentials for the posts to which they aspire other than being “outsiders,” which describes every one of the other 300 million-plus Americans who doesn’t happen to currently be a high ranking government official. Since no one would think of giving these folks money to blow hard, they pay the full cost of their own campaigns.
I want to be fair here. A number of rich Democratic senators largely financed their own first races and now only get party funding because they’re already in office. A number of Democratic congressmen may not directly tap their campaign tills, but strongly encourage special interest donors to give money to their favorite charity — which happen to be run by a family member or close associate. And some Democrats now in Congress had few credentials on 2008 other than a never actually described desire for something called “change.”
The sleaze in Washington covers a wide area. But honestly folks, do we really just want to fill important government posts with a new gaggle of the undeserving and the clueless?
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