Issues

Getting Dark Money Out of Our Elections

My Plan to Make Congress Accountable and Accessible to the People

 

I am tired of seeing Washington politicians looking out for their donors’ desires instead of their constituents’ needs.  It doesn’t have to be this way. As a lifelong Daytonian, I am running to serve everyone in our community, not just those who vote for me. It’s time we take our democracy back. As your Representative, I will work tirelessly to fix our broken campaign finance system and to put everyday people back in charge of government.

 

Here are the key components of my plan to make Congress more accountable to everyday people:

 

Hold regular town halls:  We’ve had enough of Washington politicians looking out for their self-interest at the expense of those back home, dodging town halls and public dialogue in favor of fundraisers and photo ops. As your Representative, I will hold hold four town halls per year around the district and will be accountable to you.

 

Release a public schedule: You put your trust in your elected leaders and deserve to know how how they are spending their time and who they are meeting with. If elected, I will release a public schedule of everyone I meet with in my Congressional office.

 

No work, no pay: Congress is required to pass a federal budget each year, but more and more frequently, they haven’t done that job on time- causing government shutdowns and major disruptions. If the government shuts down, Members of Congress shouldn’t get paid. If elected, I will support legislation to stop paying members of Congress until a budget is passed.


Require members of Congress to wait five years before becoming lobbyists: We need to close the revolving door where politicians can become lobbyists shortly after leaving office. We can increase integrity and take back government by shutting out special interests.

We Need to Unrig the Rules to Give Everyday People a Bigger Voice

End gerrymandering: We need to ensure that neither political party is given an unfair advantage when new congressional maps are drawn next census. We need to pass a federal law requiring states to use independent redistricting commissions to draw congressional district maps. Voters should choose their representatives- not the other way around.

 

Strengthening voting protections: Citizens have a right to cast their ballot in a secure, accessible way that fits their needs. We need policies that protect our right to vote, and actively encourage more people to cast their ballots like expanding voting hours, automatically registering Americans to vote, restoring voting rights for those who have paid their debt to society.

 

Stopping the corrupting influence of big money in politics: Until we fix our broken campaign finance system, progress on all of the critical issues we really care about will continue to stall. Big donors and special interests unfairly profit and benefit,  while hard-working Americans will be left to suffer the consequences. A new Congress can write new rules to change the system to give a bigger voice to small donors and everyday people. Here are key components to fix our system:

 

Reject Corporate PAC money: The avalanche of special interest money in elections is undermining our democracy, and shutting everyday Americans out of the process. That is why I rejected any money from corporate PACs. We need to pass laws to prohibit contributions to candidates from corporate PACs.


Overturn Citizens United: The Citizens United v. FEC decision completely changed elections in the United States, allowing unlimited and dark money spending. Now, the money in politics problem is worse than ever before. Corporations and special interests are not people and their oversized influence on the way our government works needs to end now. We need to work toward a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.

Strengthen disclosure of outside political spending: We deserve total transparency in our elections to avoid undue influence by individuals or organizations. Disclosures would also prevent foreign money organizations using shell companies to influence elections.

Fair election funding: We need to transform the way our elections are funded, so candidates have the option to run with solely the support of everyday voters they wish to represent instead of big-money donors. This gives candidates a greater voice in their own elections and empowers those who can’t afford to write checks for thousands of dollars.

Stop the intrusion of foreign money: American elections should be about Americans. We need to make sure foreign money stays out. I support strong disclosure laws to prevent foreign money organizations from using shell companies to influence elections.

Stronger penalties for breaking the rules: It seems like every day we hear of another politician breaking the rules to benefit themselves. We need better enforcement of our laws. Candidates should be held accountable for breaking the rules and face real consequences, not just a slap on the wrist.


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