$1 Billion in Cash Hauled Down by Sacramento Politicians Demonstrates Need for Fair Elections

By Press Release

LOS ANGELES - Proponents of the California Fair Elections Act said that a new report released by the state's Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) today demonstrates precisely why California needs fair elections reform. The FPPC's report says officeholders and candidates for state office in California have directly raised more than $1 billion despite fundraising limits that took effect in 2001 and 2002.

The California Fair Elections Act passed through the Legislature and was signed by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2008 and will appear on the June 2010 ballot. With no new taxes or impact on the general fund, the initiative would create a pilot project providing voluntary public financing for candidates running for Secretary of State in 2014 and 2018 who qualify and agree to strict spending limits.

Trent Lange, President of the California Clean Money Campaign, made the following statement:

"Voters know our system is broken, because while the war chests of Sacramento politicians are bigger than ever, California's problems seem worse than ever.

"With a record-breaking budget deficit, a health care crisis, and a decaying public infrastructure, we need our elected officials to have a laser-like focus on solving California's challenges. Instead, the FPPC reports that under our money-driven election system, politicians have been focused on raising money at the rate of $14,354 per hour, for a total of more than $1 billion over the last 6-8 years.

"On the June 2010 ballot, voters will have the opportunity to begin to fundamentally reform the election process by getting elected officials out of the fundraising game so that they are accountable to voters, not campaign donors."

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