Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jay Nixon has unveiled a campaign finance reform proposal he believes will address what he sees as a problem – too much money in politics. Nixon is calling for the Legislature to change the current campaign contribution laws so that political party committees would have to abide by the same limits governing the amounts individuals can contribute.
These party committees can now give as much as ten times more than individuals can contribute to campaigns or candidates. Nixon says this would improve transparency, but he acknowledges individuals who want to give more than the limit could simply create additional political committees, with each giving the maximum amount to a candidate or campaign. Such was the case following the State Supreme Court ruling striking down a law doing away with contribution limits.
Contributor Rex Sinquefield had donated tens of thousands of dollars in excess of the reinstated limits and had the money returned. Sinquefield promptly set up dozens of committees to accomplish what he had initially set out to do – and it was completely within the law.