GOP Platform Endorses ‘Anything Goes’ Approach to Campaign Money

The 2012 Republican platform puts the party of Abraham Lincoln up for sale to the highest bidder, welcoming the infusion into our elections of hundreds of millions of dollars – often donated anonymously by corporations and billionaires who will expect government to provide a generous return on their money, Common Cause said today.

“Forty years after Watergate, when courageous Republicans helped take down a president of their own party corrupted by secret money, and four years after their nomination of John McCain, who distinguished himself by fighting for sensible controls on political spending, Republicans have come full circle,” said Common Cause President Bob Edgar.

“The new GOP platform’s naked endorsement of unbridled campaign finance, free from even modest disclosure requirements, is a stunning break with the party’s history and with its rank-and-file members, who in poll after poll have voiced strong support for campaign spending limits and transparency,” Edgar said.

Eight of nine Supreme Court justices also have endorsed disclosure as an antidote to the corrupting influence of political money and pronounced it constitutional, Edgar said.

As recently as Sunday, GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney called for a return to the use of public financing for the 2016 presidential campaign, citing the potential for corruption that goes along with the huge sums being invested in this year’s election.

“It will be interesting to see if Mr. Romney buckles to the wishes of the party platform or sticks to his guns and backs them up with a substantive proposal to fix presidential public financing,” Edgar said.

“Even more interesting will be whether Democrats, who sadly are devoting considerable energy to getting a fatter share of all the secret money flowing into this election, put those efforts aside and now make reform a centerpiece of their campaign. The GOP platform offers them an opportunity to draw a clear line on this critical issue.”