Wednesday, November 15, 2006

PACS and Local Elections

From a recent SHT editorial:
More than $20,000 from a political action committee helped John Simmonds get re-elected to the Venice City Council last week.

Simmonds received the campaign contributions from Citizens for Quality Government, which was formed in 2000. Since then, all the City Council candidates supported by the group have won. In other words, CQG is 10-0.

This is one of the reasons that the City Charter Review Committee was reluctant to endorse an elected mayor. A number of citizens raised this issue: PACS can put large amounts of funding into local elections and their advertising (truthful or not) can sway voters.

The Charter Review Committee also recommended limiting individual donations to candidates to a maximum of $200. This is the amount allowed in the county elections.

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