The True Forces that drive our Elections

Ava Darden, Design Editor

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Many things drive an election. Anger, passion and fear are merely emotional examples that persuade voters of all backgrounds to support candidates they feel will advocate for and well represent their values. But one thing turns the political tides more than anything a voter population can. Money.

As the gun control pot boils over in Washington, protesters continually cite the large donations made by the National Rifle Association to the campaigns of Republican lawmakers, using them as evidence to criminalize the lenient attitudes of prolific politicians such as Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio.

But underneath the surface lies something much more Orwellian, the contribution of businesses to political campaigns. According to The Atlantic, corporations spend an average of $2.6 billion on lobbying expenditures, considerably more than the combined $2 billion dollar budget for both the House and Senate. It is reported that for every $1 spent by a public-interest group or labor union, a private corporation spends $34, and the gap is only widening.

In 1972, an organization dubbed “The Business Roundtable” was formed by a group of CEOs, exclusively to expand their sphere of political influence. Since then, these executive officers have continued to contribute to what they call “politically conservative…business public policy.” While these corporate representatives continue to give sizeable donations to their politicians of choice, one thing has changed since the 70’s. They are no longer alone.

But all is not lost. There are ways to regain the balance that has tipped liberty’s scales. If citizens were to support organizations that advocate hiring more experienced staff. This can also be accomplished by investing in Congress, and giving the power back to policy makers who desire to hire the most experienced workers, rather than those that are supported by lobbyists for major corporations. It will take hard, methodical work to wriggle out from under big business’ thumb, but it can be done.


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