Rapoport in Times-Union: Reform State’s Campaign Finance

Letter to the Editor: Reform State’s Campaign Finance

Albany Times-Union

Miles Rapoport

October 28, 2012

Across the nation and in New York, corporations and wealthy individuals are making huge campaign contributions that drown out the voices of middle- and working-class voters.

Full funding of the Board of Elections and stronger contribution disclosure, as called for in the editorial “Campaign law rhetoric, reality,” Oct. 24, are steps in the right direction, but they are not enough to really put everyday New Yorkers back in charge.

In Connecticut, public financing of elections has been an enormous step forward and shows it can be done. New York needs a small-donor matching system in order to ensure the state’s future is in its citizens’ hands, not those of big money donors. A matching grant system like the one in New York City would inspire new donors to join the process, encourage candidates and elected leaders to be more accountable to their constituents’ priorities and embolden new candidates from diverse backgrounds to run for office.

New Yorkers want this change and Gov. Andrew Cuomo has expressed support for campaign finance reform. There’s no reason to limit the Empire State’s potential to be a national leader.

MILES RAPOPORT

President, Demos

Former Secretary of the State of Connecticut

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