Corporate America's Favorite Campaign-Finance Loophole

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The end-of-summer Republican and Democratic conventions are attracting millions in corporate donations, report Paul Demko and Anna Pratt for the Minnesota Independent, with companies like Cargill and Qwest taking advantage of “the biggest loophole in U.S. campaign finance law: the absence of any limits on what corporations and individuals can give in support of presidential conventions.”

They aren’t required to disclose dollar amounts to the public, either, and the Minnesota Independent‘s attempts to find out–staffers contacted 53 organizations listed as donors on the RNC host committee’s website–were mostly ignored or declined. (Just eight companies agreed to disclose how much they’ve donated to the convention.)

The Republican get-together may be celebrated on broadcast television as an exercise in democracy but it will serve as a unique opportunity for special interests to buy access to influential people without the public much the wiser. Ditto for Denver. The delegates will vote on floors paved with money.

I wonder how much of the money is going toward special convention attire.

Image by A Siegel, licensed under Creative Commons.

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