Are Super PACs Good for Democracy?

What exactly is a Super PAC? Professor Bradley Smith, the former Commissioner of the Federal Election Commission, brings some clarity to these controversial groups by taking a close look at Super PACs: what they do and how they impact elections. In the video, Professor Smith asserts that many of the alleged harms caused by Super PACs are based on misconceptions. According to Smith: “far from being the death knell for democracy, Super PACs have been a positive development.” Do you agree? Are Super PACs really good for democracy? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

6 Comments

  1. libertyiowa

    If money is speech and corporations, unions and 503(c)(4) have a right to free speech, why not allow these corporate bodies give directly to candidates subject to the same limit restrictions that individuals have? 

  2. Brian Phillips

    Great point about incumbents.  Once entrenched it is incredibly difficult to get rid of them.  Hopefully Super PAC’s help level the playing field further.

  3. TateFegley

    I really enjoyed this video as I believe it shed light on things that can’t really be determined without empirical research. Indeed, it is as though people just assume that Super PACs would lead to corporations controlling elections without actually researching what happens.

    I am quite skeptical of campaign finance reform and the promises of those advocating it. It would appear to me that you won’t get the money out of politics until politicians cease having so many favors to give. I also fear that politicians being in charge of campaign finance reform will lead to rules that are more beneficial for incumbents; it would be, after all, incumbents making the rules.

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