“There are really no limits on the amount of money you can give to a campaign,” explained Chuck Todd on his MSNBC program, The Daily Rundown. “We could claim there are limits, but they don’t really exist because of the way the system works.”
Todd isn’t talking about you and me. We have limits. By law, each person in each election can give no more than $2,600 to any single candidate.
He’s focused on billionaires. You know, the Koch brothers we hear so much about, or gambling magnate Sheldon Adelson. And, on the Democratic side, the super-rich Tom Streyer, Michael Bloomberg, George Soros and others.
But billionaires have limits, too. Their advantage is simply being able to afford the work-arounds. They can hire lawyers to advise them through the maze of speech and finance regulations. They can fund a SuperPAC or an independent expenditure or start a whole new organization if necessary to get their message out.
I’m not complaining. Billionaires have an inalienable right to flap their jaws and spend their money.
I’m only saying that we merely aspiring billionaires — the great American mostly washed middle class — should also be free to flap our jaws, to make our big political contribution and to have our say.
But we don’t. It’s a federal crime for you or me to donate one dollar more than $2,600 to the general election campaign of a congressional candidate we deeply believe in.
That it is a crime is the biggest campaign finance scandal of all.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.