Thursday, January 11, 2018

D.C. Fair Elections Act Passed City Council

Charles Allen (D) has served on the D.C. Council representing Ward 6 since 2014. He Chairs the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, which has Oversight over Government Ethics and Election Law.

After shepherding through the Council the Fair Elections Act, a Bill creating a Public-Financing Option for Candidates running for Mayor, Councilmember, or State Board of Education, it passed the Council last night, B22-0192.

This is a big deal, and it’s going to change how Candidates run for Public Office by changing whom they spend most of their time with: you, their Constituent.

How it works:

Candidates who qualify can agree to take a Lower Maximum Donation:

Mayor - $200 instead of $2,000, results in a $6 - $1,700 Donation

Ward-based Councilmember/State Board of Education - $50 instead of $500, results in a $6 - $300 Donation.

They will receive a 5-to-1 Match on every Dollar given by an individual D.C. Resident. They’ll also receive a Base Grant to help Kick-Start their Campaign. In exchange for all of this Taxpayer Money, they agree to take No Money from Corporations or Traditional PACs.

The common critique against Public Financing usually revolves around this: “Why should taxpayers pay for incumbents who already raise tons of money?”

This is looking at the question the wrong way. The amount of Money isn’t the big problem. It’s where that Money comes from that creates such Distrust from Voters. And that matters a lot. Ask yourself, if you only have $10 to give to a Candidate, do you believe that the Money gets your Voice heard? In many cases, people don’t believe so. But under the Fair Elections Act, Candidates are going to try hard to earn your Donation because that $10 now becomes $60.

He's been working on these Issues since before He ran for Office. He came very close to getting a Ballot Initiative through that would ask D.C. Voters to consider Banning All Corporate Gifts outright, but we fell short at the last moment.

Four years ago, when He ran to be the Ward 6 Councilmember, He won without taking any Corporate or PAC Money, along with His At-Large Colleague Elissa Silverman. They were the first to do so successfully in the City’s History.

These Policies will Re-Energize Ward 6 and District Residents. As Chair of the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, He is doing a lot to help bring Trust and Belief in the Voter's Voice in our System.

He's not done. In the next few months, He's Committee is going to work on Legislation that addresses Pay-to-Play Politics and Contributions from City Contractors. He wants to address Overcrowding at Polling Locations where Population Density has soared. And He wants Outreach from the Board of Elections to be Modernized so Voters can get Information the way they got lots of other things, like Electronically.

All of these little and not-so-little Changes will help more Residents Believe in their Own Voice to Shape a Government of the People, by the People.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker
Digg! StumbleUpon

No comments: