The Lonely Centrist

A place for reasoned debate about the issues of the day.

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Monday, January 29, 2007

The Death of Campaign Finance Reform?

Is the internet the death of campaign finance reform? Much has been written about blogs and so on, but with the growth of YouTube - well, read this article in the Los Angeles Times (free registration).

Money quote:
For the candidates, as well as their detractors, the chief attribute of Web video is its broad reach, accomplished at little or no expense.

"You can grab it, send it, link it, and at zero cost," said Matthew Dowd, a top strategist for President Bush's 2004 reelection campaign. "Two hundred thousand people could see it in 24 hours."

It seems to me that Republicans and conservatives are way behind in this game, which likely means that Republicans will continue their movement - started with the "527" controversy - from being anti-campaign finance regulation to being pro-campaign finance regulation; while Democrats move in the other direction. But frankly, I don't see how regulation can get a grip on this stuff.

Mind you, I'm not entirely thrilled - there will be a great deal of unfairness, quotes from long ago taken out of context, etc. - but as usual, the "cure" - government regulation - would be worse than the disease. I hope - and suspect - that soon enough voters will get wise to all that can be done with video. And ultimately lots of valuable info will be available to voters.

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