Campaign Finance

Our campaign finance system disadvantages those from underrepresented or less affluent backgrounds and undermines our democracy in the process. If we want a government that looks like the people it represents, we need to reform our campaign finance system to level the playing field. Elections should be a competition of ideas, not dollars raised. 

As a first-time political candidate, my experience running to represent New York’s 17th Congressional District has given me a firsthand look at the urgent need for fundamental reform. Candidates with less personal wealth are forced to spend too many hours raising money instead of talking to voters. Wealthier candidates who can fund their own campaigns are given a leg up. Lucky circumstances of birth should not give anyone the right to elected office.

We need to transform our campaign finance system with transparency, accountability, and effective restrictions that stop the wealthiest individuals, special interests, and corporations from exerting undue influence on our political system.

At this time of distrust and dysfunction, reforming campaign finance is a critical step to restoring faith in Congress as an institution and to ensuring our laws serve the interest of the American people first and foremost.

In Congress I will fight to:

  • Institute the small-dollar donation matching program proposed in HR1 to amplify the power of small contributions and neutralize the influence of big-money 

  • Introduce a tax credit for small-dollar in-state contributors to incentivize political attention and involvement

  • Pass legislation overturning Citizens United and eliminate corporate money from federal elections

  • Implement more stringent transparency rules and stricter enforcement of existing disclosure rules

  • Limit campaign self-funding to ensure that millionaires and billionaires can’t grease the wheels and try to buy elections

  • Research the efficacy of a national voucher system to give voters access to funds to donate to candidates each cycle, similar to the one used for local elections in Seattle, and the larger-scale systems promoted by presidential candidates Kirsten Gillibrand and Andrew Yang

  • Require lawmakers to divest from holdings in individual companies’ stock—lawmakers should not have financial interests in the performance or profitability of particular corporations

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