MA Sen. James (Jamie) Eldridge joined up to talk campaign-finance reform, specifically disclosure of contributions. He’s as appalled as we about the Citizens United decision. He is a leader in nibbling away at its most pernicious effects with legislation here. Click below to hear is descriptions of the problems and solutions.
Currently he has two bills that could make big differences in next year’s elections, ones in which we have open governor, attorney general, and treasurer/receiver general spots. The flood of undisclosed donations, particularly those from out of MA, into the recent mayoral election has set the stage. One of his bills, (S.321/H.651), requires timely disclosure of big donors â€” when contributions occur and not well after the election.
We covered a lot of the subject in the show â€” his current bills, the history of various campaign reform in both houses here, his own experiences running as a clean-elections candidate, the effects of outside money in Boston, and of course, the outlook for the watered down election-reform bill that passed our House and the outlook for S.321.
He also would like to see Citizens United reversed by Constitutional amendment. He doesn’t know whether public outrage will drive that in years rather than decades. Meanwhile, he is one of the legislators in various states hacking and nibbling at election-financing sins.