When I first thought of running for Congress I reached out to several close friends and associates for advice; almost all said, “Start raising money.” With my plans to run a grassroots campaign this was a bit disheartening. Still, I’m steadfast in my belief that the best way to get money out of politics is to elect candidates that don’t accept PAC and special interest money.
Cultural Bipartisan Problem: According to Open Secrets the 2,394 registered Super PACs raised $1.7B in 2016, and spent over $1B of that money. Additionally, a quick review of United Health’s Political PAC donation summary demonstrates that money is flowing to both sides of the aisle. It’s hard to imagine that they would donate that much money with the intentions of lowering your policy premiums. When a candidate raises $1.8M through PACs and wealthy donors their loyalties are not to the people of the district, but to the special interest that pump money into their campaign.
Eric’s Words: In a campaign video in 2012 he criticized Pete Stark for receiving “over 80% of funding from Corporate Political Action Committees.” In 2014 when asked about campaign finance Eric Swalwell stated, “Corporate, outside spending, is poisoning our politics and affecting our ability to reach consensus in the Congress.”
Eric’s Actions: Over the past 3 elections Eric has accepted almost $2M in donations from PACs.
My promise: I pledged to accept only individual donations. If elected I will join Ro Khanna and only 5 other members of Congress in the NO PAC Caucus; pledging to reject the corruption that comes from special interests money.
Ideas for Progress: We cannot overturn Citizen’s United, but we CAN determine who is elected to represent CA15 in Washington.
My Legislative Proposals:
- Capping the amount a candidate may receive by PACs
- Eliminate Campaign to Campaign donations
- Reduce PAC Donation Max to $1,000 Total per election cycle
In June and November of 2018 CA15 will have a choice between two candidates with very different beliefs and behaviors when it comes to campaign financing. If elected I won’t be beholden to the Corporate PACs- making my sole obligation to people of CA15.