Saturday, April 05, 2008

Stupid Campaign Finance Reporting

I recommend reading this primer by DHinMI. It isn't the biggest deal in the world, but it's one of those subjects that reporters frequently report in a completely misleading way. And unlike some issues, this one is rather simple and something they should (and probably do) understand. Corporations cannot give money to candidates. When people donate money to a candidate, they list their employer. But most people who give money aren't doing so because they think they're pushing the interests of their employer, they're just normal citizens donating to their favorite candidate. Corporate PACs, while still coming from individual employees in theory, are a bit different. The money still doesn't come from the firm itself, but obviously they exist to advance the interest of the firm/industry and there might be some informal coercion which gets employees to contribute to them.