October 24 2011
Do Super PACs Corrupt?
Once again, I disagree with the premise of this question, which suggests the practice of giving money to political campaigns is somehow “corrupt.” Let’s be clear: contributing money to candidates, parties, activist groups, or PACs is a good thing. It’s not only the basis for political free speech, but also it encourages direct involvement in the political process.
The rise of Super PACs should come as no surprise. The limits imposed by McCain-Feingold in 2002 did not remove the drive to influence politics. Instead, it made certain that wealthy donors would have to find a back-door way of contributing to political advertising without “coordinating” with individual candidates and parties.
Super PACs are just the newest fad in an effort to get around restrictive campaign finance reforms. Doesn’t anyone recall when the White House proposed the 2010 DISCLOSE Act, which would have muzzled thousands of non-profit and for-profit entities, while carving-out exemptions for political donations from big(ger) voices like the teacher’s unions and the NRA? Now that was corrupt.