DV Archive

Decision Virginia Archive 8/08- 7/12

Buying A Voice: Two candidates, two different opinions on campaign cash

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There may not be a race in America that will have more money flowing into it, then the race for U.S. Senate from Virginia. Much of that money will flow from political advocacy groups that aren’t required to publically reveal their donors.  In their recent debate we asked both of the leading candidates to request these third party groups to stay out of the U.S. Senate race.

Neither took us up on our offer.

Both republican George Allen and democrat Tim Kaine believe there is something wrong with the big donors being able to fund damaging political ads and do so without the public knowing who they are.

“The federal laws are very complicated and convoluted and there are restrictions,” said Allen.

Kaine added, “I think it is a disaster to let corporation spend corporate money in the way that they are spending it now.”

The two depart when it comes to the principle behind the Supreme Court’s “Citizens United” decision.

Allen argues it is a defense of freedom of speech.

“I don’t want to say in the midst of a political campaign that any American should not be able to express their views,” he said.

Kaine called the ruling a travesty.

“It’s opened up groups to pour in secret money and if you can hide your identity, you just might give more,” he said.

But while both found their flaws with the “Citizens United” case, neither was willing to independently remove themselves from these third party groups that could help, or hurt their respective campaigns.

“If George and I could reach an agreement and we could get everyone to stay out of the race, other than George Allen and me i would agree to it tomorrow,” said Kaine

Allen wouldn’t make the deal.

“There is a reason why those organizations are allowed to keep the confidentially of their donors,” he said.

The full exchange from the December 7th debate can be found below:

Written by Ryan Nobles

December 16, 2011 at 7:22 pm

One Response

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  1. …Shame on all of us for letting our political process be corrupted by money and influence peddlers.
    Hearing George Allen mouth supposed opposition to outside money by saying how complicated and convoluted federal election law is defies description. What??? Did he not understand the question?
    Tim Kaine failed to give any real answer to the same question. His answer was weak and generic. Merely saying something is a travesty without taking action makes a person party to the offense.
    George Allen and Tim Kaine are both good men who truly believe in what they say and do. As citizens, we are fortunate to have these two men running for the senate seat of Virginia. It promises to be a great race. Sadly it is to be marred by the money donated by faceless shadow donors. And that is our fault for letting it happen not theirs…

    Bob Hayhurst

    December 16, 2011 at 8:57 pm


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