I believe the key to true campaign finance reform lies in ending Citizens United – either by a constitutional amendment or by another Supreme Court ruling superseding the previous decision.
I served on the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee in the Maine House for two years, where I oversaw election and campaign finance legislation in Maine. During that time, nearly every piece of legislation introduced to reduce the influence of money in politics failed on constitutional grounds because of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United.
While ending Citizens United is my primary focus, other steps can be taken to address this problem. I have run as a clean elections candidate before. Authorizing meaningful public funding options for political campaigns will give candidates the opportunity to focus more on voter engagement and less on finding donors. I believe the federal government would be wise to follow Maine’s lead and establish a robust clean elections system.
Congress should also increase transparency in fundraising and spending. In Congress, I will seek new ways to remove so-called “dark money” from politics, and shed light on how special interest groups spend. As a candidate for Congress, I have taken the No Corporate PAC Money Pledge.
Finally, I believe Congress should establish fees on all paid campaign and political advertising as a means to fund federal clean elections candidates and the Federal Elections Commission.