The Importance Of Soft Money On Presidential Elections

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Donald Trump made a pledge earlier this year, stating: “I’m using my own money. I’m not using the lobbyists. I’m not using donors. I don’t care. I’m really rich.” According to Politico, he will need over $1.5 billion in campaign money to achieve United States Presidency (Gold). If that amount is multiplied by the twenty candidates currently running for president, then over $30 billion could potentially be spent on the presidency! That is over 600,000 times more than the average U.S. family income of $50,000! (United States) It is an enormous figure. This paper will show how much money is actually spent on presidential elections, and will use information collected from the 2012 presidential elections. How much money is actually spend on elections …show more content…
Conversely, there is what is known as “soft money.” “Soft money,” while it can be donated in certain cases, is not explicitly stated as intended for a certain candidate. It is spent by interest groups and political parties for “party-building activities,” or “voter education” (Mears; McNamara).
The Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act (BCRA), regulates the spending of “soft money.” National parties may not accept or spend “soft money.” State parties can accept and spend “soft money,” but are limited to $10,000 a year, which must be spent on increasing voter registration and voting participation (McNarmara). Advertisements by PACs are stringently regulated. If an advertisement referencing a candidate takes place within 60 days of a general election, or 30 days of a primary, it can only be paid for with “hard money”
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What is it being used for? You can see the results of donation money being spent every day. Advertisements bombarding the television screen, signs littering the roadside, and volunteers handing out pieces of paper are all examples of campaign funding. Whenever a candidate makes a speech at a podium or appears on an interview, someone has to pay for it. Is the current campaign finance system good? Does it need improvement? Should less money be spent? More? Should citizens and lawmakers push for more even more regulation, or removed “restraints” on the First Amendment? Donald Trump planned to spend $15 million on commercials over the summer, but never did. Why? The cable networks provided “free nationwide publicity (Healy). With the $1 million from the Bank of America Mitt Romney used on his failed campaign, a student could buy a nice house, pay off their college loans, purchase a car, eat well, and still have plenty of money for a family, their children’s college educations, and a comfy retirement. Or that $1 million could be spent on feeding America’s hungry, improving a school, or even repaving a road in North Carolina. $1 million dollars spent on an election that was not even

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