Resolution for Comprehensive Campaign Finance Reform
Adopted by the
Democratic State Convention on
WHEREAS, the Republican Party in this state has collected millions of dollars every year in “soft money” corporate and special interest contributions to its “housekeeping funds” supposedly for overhead expenses, and has then deployed this money to hire campaign consultants and otherwise further political campaigns, thus selling New York government off to the highest bidders and evading even the current grossly inadequate limits on campaign contributions in New York State, and
WHEREAS, this evasion of state election law is exacerbated by large transfers from the political parties to which donations were initially made to political campaigns, and by the lack of any disclosure of the “intermediaries” or “bundlers” of campaign contributions, and
WHEREAS, the politically appointed state Board of Elections is deadlocked and unable to authorize an investigation of unlawful fundraising practices by the Republican Party, and
WHEREAS, the weak system of campaign finance
WHEREAS, New York State has no system of public finance for elections for Governor and other statewide offices, and no limits on the amounts which can be raised and spent in statewide elections, unlike elections for President of the United States and for Mayor of New York City, and
WHEREAS, New York’s grossly inadequate campaign finance restrictions and the liberal evasion of even those restrictions through “soft money” and “housekeeping funds,” transfers between political committees, the bundling of contributions, and unlimited spending in statewide races, together make New York one of the least effective of all states in regulating the influence of large donors, corporations and other special interests in state elections,
NOW, IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED by the Democratic Party of the State of New York, to call upon the current Governor and Legislature to enact, and to pledge that the next Democratic Governor and Legislature shall enact, a comprehensive campaign finance reform statue which shall include provisions to:
1. Entirely ban, or limit to fully disclosed contributions of no more than $1,000, all “soft money” and “housekeeping” contributions to political parties;
2. Sharply restrict the amount of money which political parties may transfer to candidates or to other political committees;
3. Require the disclosure of the “intermediaries” or “bundlers” of campaign contributions;
4. Establish a comprehensive public finance system for elections for Governor and other statewide offices including effective limits on contributions and on aggregate campaign spending; and
5. Replace the current politically appointed Board of Elections by an independent Board appointed based on merit.
This resolution was introduced by Lawrence C. Moss, proposed by the Reform Caucus of the New York State Democratic Committee, and Adopted by the New York State Democratic Convention in Rye, NY on May 28, 1998.