Seeking to marginalize the influence of super PACs and promote transparency, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has put forward a proposal which would eliminate caps on contributions to individual candidates.
Cruz is working in tandem with Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) to advance his fundraising proposal.
Under current campaign finances law, super PACs are required to disclose the source of donations only at certain times, but the origin of some donations are never revealed due to provisions in existing laws which prevent the source of donations given to non-profit groups from being revealed.
Under Cruz and Meadow’s plan, all contributions to individual candidates exceeding $200 would require disclosure of the source in a 24-hour period.
“Establishing unlimited contributions paired with immediate disclosure is the best way to promote transparency, eliminate the viability of SuperPACs going forward, and ensure that free speech is protected in the electoral process,” Cruz said in a statement.
Although super PACs have become a principal fundraising machine of campaigns since the 2010 High Court ruling Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Cruz argues against current laws in which he says PACs often overpower the message of individual candidate.
“Candidates should define their own messages, and citizens should be free to support whatever candidate they choose to support,” Cruz added in his statement.
Despite facing an uphill battle in Congress, both Cruz and Meadows may gain broad support: Although the landmark Citizens United case was popular with some lawmakers, the duo, who have labeled their proposal the “Super PAC Elimination Act of 2017,” are betting they can gain interest over the idea transparency will increase and candidates will not have to contend with groups which blur a candidate’s message to constituents.
[The Hill] [Photo courtesy Reuters/Jonathan Ernst via Slate]