Useful Reminders

Senators John McCain and Russ Feingold, known for their effort at campaign finance reform are once more making a point about campaign finance. They have put a hold on President Obama’s nominee to the Federal Election Commission. Two other seats will come to be vacant and they want to know who will be on them since the nature of the FEC is at stake and they still believe in the need for election reform. The current FEC they say is “mired in enforcement gridlock.”
As a candidate Obama opted out of the public financing system which freed him to end up raising almost a billion dollars. But he did promise to overhaul election financing and the commission that is supposed to enforce campaign law. So far—and let’s cut him some slack—he has yet to address it. Cutting him slack, however, doesn’t mean this is not an important issue. Not only is it important to anyone who believes billion dollar campaigns are ultimately not in the public good, it is also one that fits into the reevaluation of the private and public spending the economic crisis is eliciting–for it would seem likely that public financing of political campaign would help us in the needed reordering of our priorities. Senators McCain and Feingold are right to make a point and continue their involvement. They also serve as reminders that we too mustn’t forget the issue.