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senate Bill S. 1538

Would a Public Campaign Finance System for Senators Empower Ordinary Citizens?

Argument in favor

This public campaign finance system would give average citizens an incentive to make small contributions to political candidates by offering 6-to-1 matching for small donations and weaken powerful organizations that try to tip the scales in Senate elections.

Bill's Opinion
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09/28/2016
Of course it would. If you don't have to compete against corporations or wealthy individuals to run a campaign it's very hard to win. We need the best ideas. Not the most wealthy people, running our nation.
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Argument opposed

There is no reason to believe that this public campaign finance system would actually be used by Senate candidates. They have need to raise as much money as possible, and relying on this system’s donation matching may leave them underfunded.

Pancake's Opinion
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12/20/2016
As good as this system sounds all it really does is increase government spending & therefore our debt
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Finance
    IntroducedJune 10th, 2015

Bill Activity

  • action
    Introduced in Senate
  • referral
    Read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance.

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Finance
    IntroducedJune 10th, 2015
    There's a caveat to this bill: it's voluntary. This means that those who choose to run a more honest, voter-friendly campaign would be hindered in their fight against their corporate sponsored opponents.
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    Of course it would. If you don't have to compete against corporations or wealthy individuals to run a campaign it's very hard to win. We need the best ideas. Not the most wealthy people, running our nation.
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    Bernie Sanders' campaign demonstrated the untapped desire of millions of Americans to fund the types of candidates who reflect their interests. Matching small dollar donations would help mitigate the outsized influence of billionaires and Super PACs on our democracy, and Senate members can demonstrate their willingness to hold themselves accountable to the American public.
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    We're starting to do this in Seattle and I'm super excited about it. It gives everyone a voice, unlike the current system. I'm also sure that with enough pressure, candidates would enter gentleman's agreements to all opt into this system, though making it mandatory would be the logical next step.
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    As good as this system sounds all it really does is increase government spending & therefore our debt
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    Shouldn't be voluntary. Good first step.
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    Political positions should be achievable for all citizens, not just the wealthy.
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    We need to change how money happens in the political process.
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    I agree with the the Patriotic Millionaires viewpoint
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    We can't truly have a democracy by the people of most people can't afford to run for office.
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    We have to keep wealthy individuals, corporations and special interests from having a bigger say than the rest of us. Our voices are what the politicians should care about, not the size of our donations!
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    This empowers the public to back their representatives and encourages representatives to be involved with the public. I'm for it!
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