Summer Sale! Get unlimited digital access for 13 weeks for $13.
News Opinion

Perils of publicly financed campaigns [Letter]

Regarding your editorial on campaign financing, in what way is a checked box on a tax return not a "taxpayer-financed" campaign ("Campaign reform in action," Feb. 4)?

One can make an argument for limiting citizens' ability to participate in the political process through campaign donations. However, taxing me and using those dollars to fund a candidate that I would never vote for turns the argument on its head. Not only has my voice been softened, but I get to pay for the privilege as well. Where do I sign up?

Your editorial states a preference for publicly financed elections, but you cannot point to a single example where this policy has created "wholesale changes in the political hierarchy." The only justification is a nebulous reference to the lessened influence of big money.

Maybe it's true that politicians are for sale. Still, one must show that limiting citizens' participation in the election process makes a politician less likely to grant favors to political allies or implement public policies voters oppose. Your quest for an appearance of fairness only results in unfairly limiting my voice in the public arena.

Jeff Taylor, Odenton

To respond to this letter, send an email to Please include your name and contact information.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Reining in secret money [Editorial]

    Our view: New IRS rules are needed to curb the avalanche of undisclosed campaign funds that threaten to corrupt our democratic political system

  • Restoring people's faith in government

    Restoring people's faith in government

    In Maryland and across the country, Americans are growing deeply cynical about Washington. And for good reason. They perceive that policymaking is increasingly an insider's game, with little role for the public itself. They feel that their voices go unheard in Congress. And they see, time and time...

  • Campaign finance reform needed ASAP

    Campaign finance reform needed ASAP

    Seeing the most recent fundraising figures for the Democratic primary to elect our next U.S. senator to replace Sen. Barbara Mikulski ("Van Hollen raised $1.5M in second quarter," July 8) is a sobering reminder to all of us about how expensive campaigns have become. Members of Congress now have...

  • Md.'s arbitrary campaign finance laws [Editorial]

    Md.'s arbitrary campaign finance laws [Editorial]

    Our view: Rules about who can raise money during the legislative session and who can't expose the hollowness at the core of Md. campaign finance law

  • A vote for campaign finance reform [Letter]

    A vote for campaign finance reform [Letter]

    I recently read the "Campaign reform in action" (Feb. 5) editorial endorsing public financing of political campaigns, and I could not agree more. As a young person and relatively new voter, contending with the post-Citizens United election system is disheartening.

  • Four years after Citizens United [Commentary]

    Four years after Citizens United [Commentary]

    The Supreme Court decision opened the floodgates for big money to overtake our elections