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Monday, July 26, 2010

Business buys our elections

From Wichita Peace and Freedom Party Examiner

One of the problems with US democracy is the huge amount of corporate dollars that go to candidates who run for office. Those who take these large contributions are on TV all the time. Candidates who go for small contributions from the common people rarely get their message out, so they can’t win.
Those who do win have an obligation to make sure the contribution of a major corporation gets a return on their investment. That amounts to buying a candidate’s votes on issues such as environmental regulations.
In an article in The Wichita Eagle Todd Tiahrt and Jerry Moran have raised $18 million over their careers, and much of that is from big business. While they seem to stand the same on the issues, they have different business interests. Agricultural interests more heavily support Moran; aerospace companies and Koch Industries have heavily backed Tiahrt.
A look at Tiahrt's backers gives us a look at his politics. Koch Industries has given five times more money to Tiahrt than Moran. It ranks at the top of the corporate contributors to Tiahrt since 1994 with $318,653.
This has inspired Tiahrt to support Koch Industries right to pollute the environment and ignore scientific data that the company contributes to such problems as climate change.
According to The Wichita Eagle; Koch is the second-highest corporate contributor to Moran's career at $61,800, followed by the American Farm Bureau ($55,999), the Farm Credit Council ($55,300) and the American Bankers Association, ($54,000).
Heavy support from bankers means people who are having trouble financing their homes better not look to Moran for help. He’s on the banker’s side. He owes them.
Tiahrt has drawn support from the defence industry. He is a member of a subcommittee that controls Pentagon spending. He became one of the subjects of an ethics probe over earmarks to campaign contributors. The House Ethics Committee cleared him. But that’s not the end of it. The case has been forwarded to the Justice Department by the Office of Congressional Ethics.
This explains why Tiahrt is such a hawk when it came to supporting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as appropriating funds to such countries as the Philippines where there are insurgencies. Tiahrt is supporting his financial interests.
Both candidates owe a lot to the corporations that support them. Although all the corporate donors told The Wichita Eagle they like the values of the candidates, what they really want is favors and votes to keep government regulations off their backs.

1 comment:

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