New York needs comprehensive campaign finance reform more than ever, to restore the public’s trust in honest, open, and efficient government. A small donor match system will put the needs of real voters — the business owners and workers who drive New York’s economy — back on the agenda.

Latest New York News

How New York Can Become a Real Democracy: Re-Center Race as Legislative Progress Continues (Op-Ed)

Executive Director of Community Voices Heard Afua Atta-Mensah argues that democracy reform is not just about good government; it is a crucial civil rights issue.  To create a truly inclusive democracy, Albany lawmakers must enact policies to ensure people of color are represented. She writes, “much of the hard work of disentangling the deep, white roots of money from politics remains, work that must be done in order to have a true democracy in New York. In particular, automatic voter registration and public financing of elections are essential to achieving this goal.” Source: Gotham Gazette Date: February 14, 2019 See full story here.

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To combat dark money, New York needs fair elections (Op-Ed)

State Senator Julia Salazar writes in favor of lowering contribution limits and establishing a small donor public financing system to counter the corrosive impact of big money in New York State politics. In order to see progress on a wide range of issues important to ordinary people, such as adequate school funding and affordable housing, it is essential that special interests no longer dominate decision making in Albany. Implementing public financing could also result in greater participation from all New Yorkers, as studies show that small donor match systems have led to increased donor involvement from low-income people and people of color. Source: City & State New York Date: February 12, 2019 See full story here.

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Albany Off to a Strong Start, But There’s More to Do

Blair Horner, Executive Director of the New York Public Interest Research Group, calls the legislature’s decision to close the LLC loophole “a long overdue and significant change.” However, he notes that “alone it doesn’t fundamentally change the campaign financing system in New York State.” The legislature should next prioritize additional campaign finance reforms, most significantly a small-donor public financing system to empower ordinary New Yorkers in the democratic process. Source: WAMC Date: February 11, 2019 See full story here.

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Latest National News

With HR 1, the House is Tackling Voting and Campaign Finance Reform

Reflecting on the first bill proposed by the new House majority, H.R. 1, Jelani Cobb writes that the legislation’s proposed small-donor match public financing system “would serve as a counterbalance to the sums that wealthy individuals and corporations pour into spending for political elections.” Source: New Yorker Date: February 18 & 25, 2019 Issue See full story here.

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Small Donations Becoming a Sign of Campaign Viability

While small donations used to signify “grass-roots support and an indication of potential voter enthusiasm,” they now are seen as a critical sign of viability for candidates. As one fundraiser put it, being able to raise significant amounts of money from many small donors “is the metric, 100 percent.” Source: Washington Post Date: February 11, 2019 See full story here.

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Seattle mailing out ‘democracy vouchers’ ahead of 2019 City Council elections

2019 marks the second election cycle in which Seattle will use its “democracy voucher” system.  With all seven district seats contested in the City Council elections later this year, Seattle is sending residents four $25 democracy vouchers to contribute to candidates, and on February 28, the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission will launch an online platform for residents to access vouchers. Source: Seattle Times Date: February 11, 2019 See full story here.

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