ABOUT THIS BLOG

I shall post videos, graphs, news stories, and other material. We shall use some of this material in class, and you may review the rest at your convenience. You will all receive invitations to post to the blog. I encourage you to use the blog in these ways:

· To post questions or comments;

· To follow up on class discussions;

· To post relevant news items or videos.

There are only two major limitations: no coarse language, and no derogatory comments about people at the Claremont Colleges.

The syllabus is at http://www1.cmc.edu/pages/faculty/JPitney/gov106-fall15.html

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Monday, February 11, 2008

Campaign Finance Laws and Loopholes (But I Repeat Myself)

The San Francisco Chronicle reports on a trend that we shall mention this week and develop in future weeks:
More money is flowing into California's legislative campaigns than ever, despite contribution limits that voters approved eight years ago in an attempt to quash the influence of well-heeled special interests in state elections, according to an analysis by The Chronicle. Big-ticket donations have moved from candidate-run funds, where individual contributions are capped at $3,600 per election, into independent campaigns run by powerful groups to elect or defeat candidates. Special interests also use loopholes to funnel money to legislators by donating to funds that fall outside the law's limits, including legal defense funds, ballot measure committees or
lawmakers' favorite charities. As a result, watchdog groups say, it has become nearly impossible for the public to follow the money.

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