Campaign Funding

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In our world today, we have the tools and technology necessary to influence elaborate campaigns, but ultimately, bad always comes with the good. I have been given the opportunity to run a committee at the University of Texas that analyzes different campaign methods in hopes of choosing the one that best portrays democracy. The committee and I want to make sure the elections for the student government are equal, efficient, and successful in all areas of their platform. All of are arguments are based off of Lawrence Lessig’s article “Democracy after Citizens United,” an article that depicts the ends and outs of campaigning and what effects it has on democracy. After evaluating 4 potential student campaigning proposals, our committee chose the proposal that most exemplifies the constitution—one that focuses on “the People alone” rather than contributors. I'd like to begin by proving the illegitimacy of Proposal 1. This specific proposal allows candidates to accept donations no matter the size or source, both on and off campus, with no limitation on the amount the campaign can spend. This type of free reign campaign funding leads to particular institutions being dependent on specific campaign donors in order to increase the value of that specific institution. If a student candidate is dependent on a specific contributor, he or she will undoubtedly do what is deemed necessary to keep the contributor in their favor, otherwise known as “dependency corruption” (Lessig) We can not allow this proposal because we do not want the students devotion to campaign funds outweighing their original platform intentions. In Lessig’s article, he presents the psychological and behavioral economic proof that “We all reward those whom we depend upon, whether or not such reward is consistence with our ideals or objectives.” These campaigning scams allowed the committee and I to conclude that Proposal 1 would lead students to favor the contributors over the rest of the student body,...
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