Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Why politics cost so much: Is funding a political organization that spends most of it's money on asking other people for money something you want to do?

I got an email solicitation today asking me to give money to "Draft Ted Cruz for President." After telling me of the courageous principled conservative stands he had taken, I was told he had what it takes to win. Then the letter said: "Rod, can I count on you? If so, follow this link right now to immediately contribute $25 or more to support Ted Cruz"!
I did not contribute. I am not ready to jump on any candidates bandwagon just yet. However, even if I was an early enthusiast for Ted Cruz, why would I be inclined to contribute?  Where does the money go? This "Draft Ted Cruz for President" organization is not authorized by the candidate. There is little doubt he is running. I don't think he needs any encouragement. What would an organization calling itself "Draft Ted Curz" do?

I went to Open Secrets and followed the link to the reports for the organization "Draft Ted Cruz for President". I read all of the quarterly and year-end reports. For the year 2014, the PAC had $485,469 in contributions and  $443,162 in expenditures. There is no scandal here. No one is getting rich off of this effort. No one is drawing a big salary. Only a modest amount is spend on administration. The largest expenditure was for postage to pay for direct mailing to raise money. I researched some of the companies who were receiving some of the money for various services. From what I could tell this is not any kind of front for taking advantage of people. No consulting firm is raking in big bucks. This all appears legitimate.

I guess if you are an enthusiast for Cruz, or for any other candidate for that matter, sending money to an organization that spends most of it's money on asking other people for money to urge the candidate to run is something you might want to do. I guess the advantage of this type operation is that the solicitation itself promotes the candidate among likely voters and makes people feel a part of that candidates campaign and helps build momentum. Still however, it seems like a lot of unnecessary money is spend on politics.

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