Obama rejects public financing

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on June 19, 2008

Barack Obama announced earlier today that he will become the first presidential candidate since the current campaign finance system was constructed in the wake of the Watergate scandal to forgo public funding -- and the limitations that go with it -- for the general election campaign.

You can watch Obama's explanation here:

First, a couple of disclaimers:

Obama is correct that the current campaign finance system is broken.

The fact that it is broken is to some extent Sen. John McCain's fault with his McCain-Feingold legislation.

If the GOP candidate had proven that he could raise funding like Obama could raise funds, then I'd encourage him to opt-out of the public financing system too. Of course, I'd also hope that he would be smart enough not to commit to public-financing in the primary campaign.

Setting those facts aside -- the broken system is something that Obama has repeatedly says that he supports. Back during the time when he undoubtedly thought that he didn't have a chance of beating the Clinton machine, Obama answered a questionnaire asking him if he would accept public financing of his general election campaign if his GOP opponent did the same with:

Yes, he replied, adding that if he became the nominee he would "aggressively pursue an agreement" with his Republican counterpart to "preserve a publicly financed election."

So much for that promise. So much for new politics. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

Let's not ignore the idiocy of Obama's reasoning for this decision either. Obama blames McCain for the RNC and 527s that are going to run ads against the Democratic nominee -- ads that McCain won't stop. Well, McCain can't stop them; it's against the law. Obama pretends there are no Democratic 527s, when in fact there are, there are more of them and they're better-funded. In fact, the only 527 running an ad right now is MoveOn.org with this stupid, dishonest ad:

Let's set aside for a moment that "Alex" won't be eligible to join the military until long after the end of the second McCain term. Let's also set aside that by the time "Alex" is old enough to make the decision on whether or not he wants to serve his country in the military, his "mother" has no say in the matter. Let's just focus, once again, on the dishonest micharacterization of McCain's comment that troops could be in Iraq for 100 years -- as long as they weren't taking casualties.

So, by the time "Alex" gets around to making his decision, we might not be in Iraq. However, if we're still there no U.S. troops will be being killed by terrorists.

As one snarky commentator noted on another site: Don't be fooled by the name. The 3rd Infantry Division isn't composed of infants.

I look forward to Obama's next press availability when he'll be asked to denounce this ad -- after all, it's this sort of thing that has him opting out of public financing. When he hems and haws, he'll be exposed for what he is -- to everyone except his mindless Obamatons.

0 comments on “Obama rejects public financing”

  1. How is that DNC funded ad dishonest? You republican shills kill me. Pompous is the word that comes to mind.

  2. This is a REALLY dumb issue. McCain would complain if Obama forgot to put the seat down in a Pentagon rest room. He's rying to find anything to give him any chance. I kind of liked McCain, but now he's behaving like Hillary; much ado about nothing.

  3. Aw, poor Johnny, no one is giving him money, so he has to beg to get public funds and money from special interests, aw, poor boy!
    It's time to move on, new boss, yes, but NOT like the old boss.
    This boss actually has popoular support, THAT is the difference.
    Majority of contributions coming from every day working Americans in very small amounts, yes, new boss, and very different.
    Welcome to the 21st century, Hoystory, get used to it, hehe!

  4. First, public financing. Saying one would aggressively speak with his or her opponent on using public financing in the general election is not a promise. So don't get it twisted. It is a statement; a promise usually beings with "I pledge" or "I promise". Second, the quote is not in its entirety - you left off the part about "if the republican opponent has committed to public financing I will aggressively...." What the republican party is leaving out is that McCain had been refusing to commit to public financing and didn't formally do so until AFTER Obama announced he wouldn't accept public financing. Third, considering the amounts of funds raised by Senator Obama I see no reason to give up an advantage to his reveal. In all reality you if you are in a competition, which this is make no doubt, you don't make things easy for your opponent.

    Regarding the ad. 17 years ago no one could have predicted that we would be in a war in Iraq. So how can you or anyone else predict that if McCain were to become president that little Alex won't be in Iraq when that time comes. In addition with regards to the comment about if and when Alex is old enough to serve it would be his decision and not his mothers. A good parent NEVER losses the right to influence his or her child. The fact is Senator McCain has a propensity toward violence and a certain lack of empathy toward soldiers and serving as reflected in his comment regarding our militaries longevity in Iraq - "Its not important".

  5. ScottNYC,

    Seventeen years ago we had just concluded major hostilities against Iraq. There was a pause for a couple years where we weren't getting shot at quite as often as after 1998.
    I'm not saying a follow-up war was a foregone conclusion, but to say "No one could have predicted that we would be in a war in Iraq" is to miss everyone in the military and the government in the 1990s who wondered if/when we were finally going to start bringing what Saddam started in 1990 to a conclusion.

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