Friday, July 16, 2010

Jepsen Wealthy Beyond His Means Owing To Public Financing

Is anyone doing the arithmetic here?

Theoretically, public financing is supposed to “even the campaign money playing field” between contestants for office.

There is no incumbent in the attorney general race. Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is running for the U.S. Senate.

Out of the gate, George Jepsen, the Democratic candidate who has accepted public financing, will be awarded $750,000, according to a story in the Greenwich Time:

“To quality for a $750,000 grant, Jepsen was required to raise at least $75,000 in contributions of $100 or less. According to a campaign finance report filed this week, Jepsen has raised about $84,500.”
Of the two Republican nominees for the office, Ross Garber has raised $72,640, and Martha Dean, the Republican nominee for the position has raised $26,000. Both Republicans have spurned public financing.

Public financing, in this instance, has tilted the playing field significantly in Jepsen’s favor. The Democratic candidate for attorney general has in his campaign kitty $651,360 more than the combined total of both his opposition candidates.

If the purpose of public campaign financing is to give all contestants an even money shot at a public office, public financing has failed spectacularly in this instance.


Fuzzy Dunlop said...

Cheers Don. Well put. I've enjoyed the public financing issue. It's given us an opportunity to finally agree.

Don Pesci said...


It will be Interesting to see if the anomaly gets any media attention. I doubt it. Actually, the problem is bound to recur IF the public financing scheme is successful. The scheme envisions that there will always be an incumbent in the race, or a millionaire whose “advantages” may be leveled though trigger mechanisms now found to be unconstitutional. It really is a mess. The scheme itself will continually throw up dubious constitutional questions; and, in respect of public financing, the Supreme Court seems determined to hue to a rational view of constitutional assaults.

I’m bitterly disappointed that we agree. It’s much more fun the other way.

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