The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

Who’s Winning the Battle for Public Opinion Over Anonymous Campaign Spending?

Have the Democrats’ attacks on Crossroads GPS and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s shadowy financing hit or missed? Turns out they’ve done a little bit of

Anita Barnes
News
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Oct 15, 2010

Have the Democrats’ attacks on Crossroads GPS and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s shadowy financing hit or missed? Turns out they’ve done a little bit of both.

On the one hand, first Crossroads GPS and now the Chamber have claimed that the allegations have galvanized their supporters and sent their fundraising through the roof. A Chamber official emailed Politico’s Mike Allen yesterday to brag, “I don’t have exact numbers, because money is continuing to pour in. It even crashed our servers. The phones blew up today – people were calling all day long. Bottom line: Today was the single largest day of online fundraising that we have ever had in the history of the Chamber.”

And conservative commentators like Glenn Beck pitched in to the cause, effectively turning a large portion of his radio show to a pledge drive for the Chamber and donating $10,000 while on the air.

On the other hand, a new poll commissioned by MoveOn (but carried out by the non-partisan Survey USA polling firm) suggests that — contrary to the expectations of most Washingtonians — voters do care a great deal about the amount of secret funding flooding elections. Among the findings of the poll, MoveOn points out:

***** An overwhelming 84% of voters polled, including 80% of Republicans and 81% of Independents, believe voters have a right to know who is paying for ads for a particular candidate.

***** Fifty-six percent of voters overall (including 53% of Independents) are less likely to vote for a candidate if they know the ads supporting that candidate are paid for anonymous corporations and wealthy donors.

Forty-seven percent of all voters are more likely to support a candidate who insists that voters have a right to know who is paying for ads, with only 9% of total voters saying they are less likely to support a candidate who holds that position.

***** Almost two out of three voters (63%) do not believe that the anonymous groups running ads hold the voters best interest in mind. This belief is held by 65% of Independent and 70% of Democratic voters.

***** A straight majority of total voters (53%) are less likely to trust a candidate to improve economic conditions if that candidate is supported by anonymous groups.

While these numbers do indicate that the Democrats’ message about secret donors might indeed resonate beyond their base, I’m still skeptical that voters are faithfully connecting their stated beliefs about campaign finance to their choice of candidates in the current election cycle. If most voters were truly less likely (as opposed to just saying they were less likely) to vote for candidates supported by anonymous corporations and donors, they’d probably have more of a problem with GOP candidates like Sharron Angle in Nevada and Ken Buck in Colorado, both of whom have received heavy backing in the form of ads from groups like Crossroads GPS that attack their opponents and are funded by anonymous donors.

The answer seems to be that either voters care about anonymous campaign donors but they care more about other issues, like the economy, or they’re not actually connecting the Crossroads GPS and Chamber ads flooding their states with the “anonymous corporations and wealthy donors” they say they distrust.

Anita Barnes | With over twenty years of professional experience in the design industry, I'm a web designer and front-end web developer. As a small business owner, I am familiar with the difficulties that come with running a business. One of those challenges is creating a strong online presence. One that not only represents your ever-changing brand and personality, but also appeals to your target audience. Throughout my web design career, I've built a distinct design style that emphasizes attention to detail. I assume that less is enough when it comes to design. You don't have to have all the bells and whistles only because you can. It's critical to figure out which elements are essential for getting your message through to your customers – and which ones are unnecessary. I'll assist you in sorting through the choices to see what works best for you.

Related

Rep. Paul Ryan to deliver SOTU response

Chairman of the House Budget Committee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will deliver the Republican response to the State of the Union Tuesday, according to Mike Allen

Rep. Paulsen allies with medical device industry to relax FDA oversight

Source: Flickr; Republicanconference (www.flickr.com/photos/republicanconference) On the heels of the Minnesota Independent story last week about U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen’s cozy financial relationship with the medical device industry, the New York Times reported Tuesday that some health professionals are alarmed by Paulsen’s push to relax Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight

Rep. Paulsen touts balanced budget constitutional amendment

In a post for the conservative blog True North , U.S. Rep

Rep. Patrick McHenry: Please, Conservatives, Fill Out Your Census Forms!

The conservative congressman from North Carolina, a constant critic of the census -- one of the people who sounded the alarm about politicization when the

Rep. Paulsen, Karl Rove the latest to get ‘glittered’

Rep. Erik Paulsen and former Bush staffer Karl Rove were both showered with glitter at the Midwest Leadership Conference Friday

Rep. Perlmutter to hold constituent meet-up in grocery store

Colorado Congressman Ed Perlmutter will hold a Government in the Grocery constituent meet-up this evening from 5-7 at the Safeway at 38th and Wadsworth in Wheat Ridge. The address is 3900 Wadsworth. The meeting, where Perlmutter typically sits at a folding table and talks to whomever shows up, is free and open to the public

Rep. Perlmutter criticizes House measure that would eliminate 800K federal jobs

Congressman Ed Perlmutter today issued a scathing statement criticizing the House of Representatives for passing a spending bill that could put nearly a million federal employees out of work. The Colorado delegation voted strictly on party lines, with all four Republicans voting in favor of the bill and the three Democrats voting in opposition. Perlmutter’s statement: “My number one priority is to get people back to work because that’s the best thing we can do to pay our debt and move forward toward economic stability

Rep. Pete Stark Won’t Dignify Constituent by, er, Micturating Upon His Leg

In the tradition of Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), California Democratic Rep. Pete Stark revealed at a recent town hall gathering that there are limits to what

Rep. Peace, ACLU seek investigation of soldier’s allegations of racial discrimination in Afghanistan

Both Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) and the American Civil Liberties Union agree: There needs to be an investigation into Spc.

© Copyright 2021 The Washington Independent All Rights Reserved

Terms & Privacy | twi.news@washingtonindependent.com