Each American should get a refundable federal tax credit of $50 that they can use to make contributions to federal candidates during presidential years, and a suitably smaller sum during off-year federal elections.
Each American should be allowed to claim a $50 refundable tax credit when filing an income tax return. Oregon and other states already do this. It's time to bring this plan to the rest of the nation.
Modern technology provides opportunities for enhanced convenience and access. Donations to campaigns could be made electronically, with the money automatically refunded to each citizen's credit card or bank account. Call these electronic transfers "democracy dollars."
About 120 million Americans went to the polls in 2008. If each citizen also had a chance to contribute democracy dollars, their donations would overwhelm the sums that corporations are likely to spend under the recent Supreme Court decision.
Didn't whatshisname--you know the guy who took the hallowed Kennedy seat--raise a boatload of money from a boatload of little guys within hours of his debate appearance? And all of those people decided to make a contribution without first waiting for the government to give them their yearly campaign allowance. Imagine that.
Also, were "corporate interests" so much more powerful prior to the 2002 McCain-Feingold Act? Have we ordinary citizens truly been living in a special-interest free paradise lo these past eight years?
I'd really love this idea if I were a political candidate. In fact, should this measure come to pass, I'm running for office. I don't really care which office--county sheriff, US Senate, Queen of the Internet--any will do. And, because I really care about all you little people out there, I'll start accepting your democracy dollars immediately.