Campaign finance 'reform' has made the system more corrupt

This is not about the performance of sitting or past presidents – they should all be given due respect. This is about how we the people have allowed our union to degrade into a work-for-cash economy when it comes to politics in general and the presidency specifically.

In their infinite wisdom, elected officials passed “campaign finance reform” that let the cash-for-votes genie out of the bottle. Super-PAC? Does “PAC” stand for “purchase a candidate?” It is a source of unlimited campaign financing with absolutely no control. I understand that under the rules established by the reform that a PAC is totally independent, and a PAC and a candidate can have no communication.

Who are they trying to kid? Why should rational, free-thinking voters believe that a PAC is anything but business as usual, but without oversight?

Just look at the dollars spent in Florida: $44 million through Jan. 30. Who benefits? Broadcast and associated advertising industries. What’s the local impact? Nausea from all the ads, but very little economically.

Change the law! Eliminate the PACs; limit contributions to some reasonable value, one time from an individual only (no corporate money), with full disclosure; or find a way for the federal government to directly fund presidential races and the states to fund congressional races.

Also, make sure employers can’t give employees gifts to be used solely as donations for a candidate. Think that’s a stretch? Guess again. It’s happened in the past.

Our system of political finance is out of control. We have candidates who made their fortunes and are spending them on their campaigns, exactly the same way as those from Wall Street, whom we are now condemning, made their fortunes. Our current political system is driven by the Golden Rule: Those with the gold rule.

I sincerely doubt that our Founders had that in mind.

Fred Simmons

Aiken, S.C.

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