In America, we have a system of government that is designed to be of, by, and for the people — a democracy where everyone should have an equal voice and our elected officials are held accountable to our needs. But today, wealthy special interests and their lobbyists have thrown our system out of balance. They make the rules, they set the agenda, and they do it by drowning out the voices of ordinary citizens.
In New York, we know that well-connected insiders have more access to our elected officials and can exert much more influence than average citizens. “Dark money” spending by Independent Expenditures (IEs) committees, commonly known as Super PACs, undermines transparency in democracy. As a result, big dollar donors can inject millions into a race to try and overwhelm the voice of average voters.
That’s why we’re working to improve disclosure of lobbying activities. There is no shortage of real solutions that our leaders can draw upon in enacting comprehensive change, instead of incremental reform, and in doing so give hope to the public that can trust can be restored.
Common Cause New York advocates to:
- Strengthen financial reporting disclosure requirements for public officers to allow the public to more easily spot conflicts of interest.
- Streamline and standardize disclosure of lobbying activity for better analysis and easier evaluation by the public.
In New York City, Common Cause New York has successfully worked with the Campaign Finance Board to require IEs to register and disclose details about their spending, and we’re fighting to impose those same restrictions throughout the state.