Karl`s PC Help Forums

Presidential campaign cost
scholar - 14-1-2008 at 21:26

By law, Presidential candidates are allowed to accept Federal funding for their campaigns, but it comes with a condition: they are then restricted in the total they may spend on the campaign. The Federal funding matches private funding, up to the limit. But, if you take some of the government money, you also accept the limit.

A candidate with sufficient funds, either from people who support his candidacy or from his own money, usually declines Federal funding because of the spending limits that come with it. If ONE party's candidate accepted the limits, and the other party's candidate did not, the race would be quite uneven. The person without limits might spend three or four times as much money in states where the race was close. It could actually happen that, as one side ran out of money, the other could run ads making false accusations, and the out-of-money candidate could not run TV ads to respond.

This is complicated, because a person might run out of money while running in the primaries. But, if he accepts government money then, he is stuck with the limits for the whole election, not just in the prmaries. Huckabee and McCain had nearly run out of money by the time New Hampshire was over. If either of them takes the Federal money and later wins the nomination, they will have handicapped their party in the general election for President.

What do you think of this problem? Should the US do away with matching funds? Should the primaries and general elections be separated in finance conditions? Do you have a better idea?


marymary100 - 14-1-2008 at 21:39

One man, one vote, one day would substantially cut down on the need for funding in the first place............. oh, and make it much more interesting for everyone.


scholar - 14-1-2008 at 21:49

Quote:
Originally posted by marymary100
One man, one vote, one day would substantially cut down on the need for funding in the first place............. oh, and make it much more interesting for everyone.
So, if the nation were evenly divided between Democrat- and Republican-thinking people, and the Democrats had a couple of people seeking the presidency and the Republicans just put up one, the Republican would win? (or vice versa?) Would it be fair for the party with the most good candidates to lose because the vote was divided?

I'm not sure that money would be saved. If ALL of the candidates from each party had to advertise and campaign all over the country, it would take a LOT of money (This year, that would be at least eight national campaigns:o.) This way, candidates who do poorly in the first several state campaigns are likely to drop out, so that they will have paid for full campaigns in as few as two states, perhaps as many as 10.


LSemmens - 15-1-2008 at 12:53

The Westminster system has its advantages.