|Money for Nothing (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Imagine getting a solicitation to contribute to a campaign for State Treasurer and then finding out the politician had no intentions of running for State Treasurer but wanted some way to get funds that he could use on another campaign which would result in going around campaign limits!
Well it seems this is all too common. While we have specific limitations on how much an individual can contribute to a campaign there is this gimmick going around in some political circles where politicians set up a number of campaign accounts and solicit contributions for all "campaigns" and then "donate" the funds from the campaign they are not pursuing to the real campaign they are. This allows donors to essentially give twice -- once to the phony campaign and once to the real. Consequently, this has created large political slush funds. But because these campaign reports are filed separately it is difficult for the public to track the double contributions.
This practice was highlighted in the Sacramento Bee as it detailed how Assemblyman Dan Logue set up a committee for State Treasurer and then admitted to the press, that he wasn't really running for State Treasurer but in fact raising money for other campaigns. (Most politicians never publicly admit that they didn't have a chance in hell of running for a statewide office because after all it might stop the contributions.)
We need to stop this practice because it creates political slush funds and makes a mockery out of campaign contribution limits. Most importantly it fails to provide the public with transparency about campaign finance.