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Welfare for Politicians: Taxpayer Financing of Political Campaigns [Hardcover]

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Item description for Welfare for Politicians: Taxpayer Financing of Political Campaigns by John Samples...

In this book, more than a dozen experts offer a broad and skeptical assessment of taxpayer financing of election campaigns.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   160
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.1" Width: 5.9" Height: 1"
Weight:   1.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Mar 25, 2005
Publisher   Cato Institute
ISBN  1930865708  
ISBN13  9781930865709  

Availability  0 units.

More About John Samples

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! John Samples directs Cato's Center for Representative Government, and is an adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins University. He has taught political science at Rutgers University and Southwest Texas University.

John Samples was born in 1956.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Government > Elections
2Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Politics > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Welfare for Politicians: Taxpayer Financing of Political Campaigns?

We already have welfare for politicians  Jan 22, 2006
This book objects to public funding of political campaigns on the basis that it is welfare for politicians. What it fails to recognize is that there could be no better form of welfare for politicians than that which we currently have. Incumbents currently enjoy a 94% re-election rate and a 4-to-1 advantage in raising money. They couldn't ask for anything better than that.

The publisher, the Cato Institute, has done excellent studies on the overspending habits of government, but it doesn't seem to catch on to the reasons why. Politicians are paid to spend money, but not by the taxpayers. Connect the dots and follow the money! They are paid by the special interests that are on the receiving end of the over $300 billion in government subsidies, tax breaks, local earmarks, and other government giveaways that are costing the average taxpayer in excess of $3000 per year for needless waste.

What is it about graft that the writers do not understand?

The fact is, we already have public funding of campaigns, it's just through the back door and it is costing us hundreds of times more than if we just funded the elections up front with public grants. At a cost of just $5 per taxpayer at the state level, and $10 per taxpayer at the federal level, that'd be a bargain at a hundred times the amount.

The voters in Maine and Arizona demanded that they be able to fund the elections and to cut the ties between those who want laws written and those who write them. If their politicians are going to be beholden to their funders, in these states those funders will be the taxpayers. Even the state politicians who opposed this system are now in favor of it. In Maine 78% of their current legislature has turned their backs on the moneyed interests. And of course, the moneyed interests don't like that a bit. The state of Arizona has been challenged seven times, and each time it has prevailed in the courts.

Importantly, the Clean Money systems, as they are called in these states, are voluntary. If a politician wants to remain under the existing private-money system, he can. If you want to give cash to a privately-funded candidate, you can. But for those politicians who voluntarily break the financial link with moneyed special interests and refuse all private campaign money, they can opt for a public grant that offers matching funds if a private candidate overspends against him. That offset provides a disincentive for the fat cats to throw money at a race but does not discourage you or others to support your candidate.

If the current spate of federal and state corruption case does not turn on Cato's light, I doubt that anything will.

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