How public campaign finance can address growing inequality
Numerous studies have shown that those giving the most to political campaigns are predominantly white, male, older and wealthy. For example, anInstitute for Southern Studies reportfound that 95 percent of the biggest donors to a number of key federal races in the 2014 and 2016 election cycles were non-Hispanic whites. Other recent studies, such as Demos’ “Stacked Deck” and Every Voice’s “Color of Money“, discovered that most large donations to federal candidates came from wealthy, majority-white areas.
A homogeneous political donor class affects public policy. A 2014 paper by Martin Gilens and Benjamin Page found that the wealthiest 10 percent of Americans — mostly white — were 15 times more likely than the general population to have their policy preferences enacted. Continue reading