Never mind that polls show the public is increasingly frustrated with a political system that gives special interests way more influence over the public policy agenda than mere voters, whose taxes finance the lucrative government contracts and favors that the big donors to political campaigns get.
Need evidence of this twisted arrangement? Consider how much time the governor and legislature have spent on casino and natural-gas issues while failing to solve a statewide crisis in education funding. Students and parents trying to get a politician's ear can't compete with industries that make large campaign contributions.
And this year's gubernatorial election has raised the stakes.
Most big givers seem to have some quid pro quo in mind, even if they haven't figured out what they want in exchange for their generosity. They expect their campaign contributions to help grease the rails leading to state contracts and government approvals. It's not unlike a scene in the Godfather movies. One day, the donor will need a favor and come to collect it from an obliging politician who wants to keep his benefactor happy.
A few legislators fed up with the system have tried to at least cap campaign contributions in
It's disappointing that Corbett hasn't shown more leadership at the state level. As a former attorney general, he knows full well the corrupting influence that money can have in politics. Corbett started the investigation that led to last year's indictments of several
The state's laissez-faire approach to political financing must die.
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