Public Ethics Commission Meeting,
Thursday, March 4, 6:30 pm,
Oakland City Hall
If you believe there should be less -- not more -- money influencing the political process, then don't miss the opportunity to make your voice heard at the next Public Ethics Commission meeting.
Recently voters across the nation were stunned by the Supreme Court's decision to let corporations inject massive amounts of cash into political campaigns. Now Oaklanders could suffer a second blow if a proposed increase in campaign finance limits is approved by the Public Ethics commission.
Fight back! Attend the special Public Ethics Commission meeting, Thursday, March 4, 6:30 pm, Oakland City Hall, and let them know that doubling the amount candidates can raise and spend puts our electoral process further up for grabs.
Campaign limits by the numbers
With the cost-of-living increase that took effect January 1, the cap on individual mayoral and council race contributions in Oakland is $700.
This is how that limit stacks up statewide:
San Francisco = $500
San Jose = $500
San Diego = $500
Fremont = $500
Berkeley = $250
San Mateo = $250
Santa Monica = $250
Long Beach = $350.
Comparable city average = $500
Los Angeles = $500 (or $1000 for all city races)
Oakland = $700
As you can see, Oakland's limit is already higher than most bigger cities. Doubling that limit to $1,400 could make this mayor's race cost nearly a $1 million in a few years--an amount that's common in countywide campaigns, not city elections. A run for a council seat could cost up to $250,000. Higher limits are a recipe for success for the wealthy and the connected while putting women and candidates of color to even greater disadvantage. Grassroots-powered campaigns wouldn't stand a chance.
Less is more
It's a no-brainer: Campaign finance limits lessen big money influence. That's why many cities cap contributions, so that politicians can better serve the needs of everyday voters, not special interest, deep-pocket donors.
Send the Public Ethics Commission your opinions at ethicscommission@oaklandnet.
Let your friends and neighbors know about this issue. Post the meeting on you neighborhood listservs, discuss the issue at your political club or neighborhood organization.
Keep in the know at the Public Ethics Commission website.
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