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Campaign Finance Reform National Debate Comes to UC

Date: Oct. 13, 2000
By: Carey Hoffman
Phone: (513) 556-1825
Archive: General News

Cincinnati -- Students and the Greater Cincinnati community have an opportunity to hear in-depth discussion about one of the hot election year topics when UC hosts a Campaign Finance Reform Debate 11 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 17 in Room 402, Tangeman University Center.

The debaters will be John Moyers and John Samples. Moyers is publisher of TomPaine.com and executive director of the Florence Fund. He also sits on the board of Public Campaign, a group that devised a "clean money" campaign reform model. Samples is the director of the Cato Institute's Center for Representative Government. He recently wrote a column for USA Today that argued against a ban on donations of soft money to political parties.

The "clean money" campaign reform model advocated by Moyers has become law in Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts and Arizona. It gives candidates the option to refuse most private money and then receive full public funding for their campaign. They also have the right to reject public money completely and fund their campaigns privately.

Samples argues that soft money actually strengthens democracy by making political parties stronger. According to Samples, that's good because parties embrace broad agendas rather than a single special interest. He also argues that since soft money goes to parties rather than individual candidates, the parties become buffers against special interest corruption. He adds that soft money can increase competition, when money is channeled into races to increase a challenger's chances against an incumbent.

Michael Margolis, UC professor of political science, will moderate the debate.

Sponsors for the debate include the Taft Memorial Fund, UC's political science department and the UC Skeptics. Attendance is free and open to the public.

For more information, e-mail uc_skeptics@hotmail.com.


 
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