Yesterday in Massachussetts, Republican candidate Scott Brown and Democratic candidate Elizabeth Warren took the unusual steps of denouncing so-called super PACs, and pledging to attempt to go forward in the hotly contested Senate seat, both are vying for, without the PAC’s money or influence.
Super PACs are an emerging issue in the 2012 election- Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart have been pounding the issue hard on their respective shows to flog Colbert’s satirical Citizens For a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow- but few candidates are very focused on the very real ethical concerns posed by such large infusions of cash from organizations that have very clearly stated interests. Warren is an anti-corruption crusader, consumer advocate and voice for the middle class, and it is interesting that Brown has moved to his position on the issue of Super PACs.
Speaking at an event in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day yesterday in the state, Warren stated that she’d like Brown to join her in attempting to limit the influence of money on the campaign. She said:
“What I’d like to do is I’d like to be able to run my campaign… I’d like for Sen. Brown to run his campaign and we both be responsible for what is said. I think that is the right way to be able to run the campaign.”
According to Politico, Brown was in agreement speaking at an American Legion post in Mattapan. The Senator indicated he was “glad professor Warren seems to be coming around on this issue,” and said he wanted to stop the super PAC spending all along:
“I think by sending a joint message to stay out, I’m hopeful they’ll accept that message. This is going to be decided by the people of Massachusetts, not by the tens of millions of outside interest dollars coming into our state.”
Of her statement that she wanted an enforceable pact, Warren elaborated Monday that she’d prefer “something that actually means something. No more politics as usual.” Do you think the growing ability of corporations to influence the outcome of elections is worrisome, or is it just free market Capitalism?