At the heart of political dysfunction — money

"Nostalgia for the age of statesmen" (Oct. 23) properly asks for the return of mature compromising legislators who place the interests of country over political party and reelection. But what was missing is mention of one of the driving forces behind the uncivil and partisan nature of today's politics — the pervasive and corrupting influence of political contributions by anonymous wealthy and corporate contributors.

These contributors tend to represent extreme elements and force candidates to take uncompromising positions to avoid well-financed campaigns by more extreme candidates beholden to these fat cat contributors. This situation was, of course, made even worse by the outrageous Citizens United decision by the Supreme Court. Until the voters rise in disgust and support limits on campaign contributions or better yet, public financing of campaign expenditures, as is the case in most other modern industrial nations, we will continue to witness dysfunction in our political process.

Jack Kinstlinger, Baltimore

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