Here’s one way Gov. Andrew Cuomo can match the acclaim he achieved by getting same-sex marriage approved in New York State: persuade the State Legislature to make New York’s system of electing legislators the fairest and most transparent in the country. Such a system should include a public financing mechanism modeled on New York City’s successful efforts to involve small donors with matching contributions. It would set sensible limits on individual and corporate contributions. It would close loopholes. It would be transparent and strictly enforced. By setting a national standard for public financing, New York State could go from laggard to leader.
The way campaign funds are raised in this state now is scandalous. The restrictions are weak and the enforcement virtually nonexistent. A special interest donor can give any amount — millions of dollars even — to a political party by labeling it for “housekeeping” use. State legislators, especially the leaders of committees, too often get their biggest checks from those who do business with their committees. And they can use their campaign treasuries for almost anything, including country club memberships and personal legal fees — even veterinarian bills for the office cat.
Full Article: Gov. Cuomo and Campaign Finance Reform – NYTimes.com.