Farewell to the Federal Campaign Finance System and the Secret Ballot?
This chapter takes a critical look at the internet fundraising techniques the Obama campaign perfected and argues that such techniques, combined with federal campaign contribution reporting requirements, pose an important challenge to political values that Americans have long embraced. Not only do the stunning amounts raised render obsolete the nation's four-decades-old system of public campaign financing; the fact that much of this money was raised from a large number of small donors, and that these donors can be readily identified in online campaign finance reports, challenges one of the most important innovations in the electoral process of the late nineteenth century, the secret ballot.
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