As was stated several decades ago (former California State Treasurer Jesse M. Unruh in 1966), “Money is the mother’s milk of politics.” It seems unfortunate that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that the Super PACs can receive unlimited amount per donation and make unlimited amounts to candidates, or spend same on their behalf. As a result, these PACs have the ability to determine the outcome of elections and thus obtain special consideration for those who have the money to donate to them.
Another result is that major-size media writers can quote donation amounts and compare them between individual candidates and officeholders in ways that radically distorts the appearance of success on the part of the individual.
A recent such news story was carried in the daily Tulsa paper with the byline of Randy Krehbiel, a staff writer of same. The headline read: “Behind scenes, Boehner raises big amounts in state.” That headline, in my opinion, was somewhat misleading as the story seemed to be a comparison of fundraising results of House Speaker Boehner and our First district Congressman, Jim Bridenstine.
In the first place, the congressional campaign office has indicated to me that there is a federal limit on contributions by individuals to a campaign of $2,700.00. Thus the officeholder must obtain limited contributions from large numbers of individuals. The story did indicate that Speaker Boehner was raising money for one of these super PACs with large-dollar contributions, admittedly from sources not contributing to the congressman.
Unfortunately, these PACs are either not required to disclose publicly their funding sources, or the major media does not research and report them, so we really find it most difficult to track them down. A few sources available to me, who do take the effort, have stated that the major donors to Speaker Boehner’s PAC are very wealthy individuals and companies whose registrations are in the Republican camp. However the recipients of their largesse indicates to me that they would be placed in the designation of RINO – that is “Republican in Name Only” – since those who receive the support from the PAC do not act and vote according to the original principles of the Republican Party or, for that matter, the U.S. Constitution.
A brief rundown of the names given to me would indicate that the major center of these major funds for political advantage (and thus legislative voting) lies in the chambers of commerce at various levels, from local through state and national. That, in my mind serves to explain the sad situation that we find our beloved republic in today (and getting worse by the day). Thus it seems that there is generated a battle between the big business interests and the individual citizens for true representation in the legislative bodies.
Unfortunately, the story mentioned seems written in a way to belittle our First District Congressman and heap praise on the outgoing Speaker. The comparison of fundraising made in the story seems more like it should be in the Opinion Section than in the News Section of the paper. But then, most of the “news” stories seen in major outlets, or for that on electronic sources of radio and TV, appear to be slanted more like an opinion commentary rather than a true reporting of “who, what, when, where and how” something happened. This has been prevalent for decades and reminds me of my often-repeated statement, “There have been a substantial number of incidents considered to be newsworthy where I was involved or a present observer where the reported ‘facts’ bore no connection to what I knew, other than something happened.”
It seems to me that those who obtain news from only one source are acting on low information to their and our disadvantage and detriment.