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Bernie Sanders, a longtime critic of the nation’s campaign finance system, is releasing a plan Monday aimed at ending the influence of corporate cash in politics, including at the 2020 Democratic National Convention.

The Vermont senator pledges to put a stop to all corporate PAC contributions to the convention if he wins the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination. AT&T, Facebook, Independence Blue Cross and other companies each gave seven-figure donations to the event’s host committee in 2016.

Sanders’ plan states that corporate lobbyists “were everywhere and filled the VIP suites” at the convention, adding that “this type of corporate sponsorship is a corrupting influence and must end if politicians are going to represent the American people.” His proposal also calls for a lifetime lobbying ban on Democratic National Committee chairs and co-chairs, as well as a prohibition on them working for companies that hold federal contracts or are trying to obtain government approval for mergers or other projects.

“Our grassroots-funded campaign is proving every single day that you don’t need billionaires and private fundraisers to run for president,” Sanders said in a statement. “We’ve received more contributions from more individual contributors than any campaign in the history of American politics because we understand the basic reality that you can’t take on a corrupt system if you take its money.”

Sanders’ policy puts the DNC in a difficult situation, and could potentially reignite tensions between the party organization and his campaign. DNC officials went to K Street last month to explain how corporations could contribute to the 2020 convention, which will be held in Milwaukee. Some lobbyists have been concerned that a candidate such as Sanders or Elizabeth Warren may try to halt corporate donations if they receive the party’s nomination.

Sanders also vows in his proposal to try to pass a constitutional amendment “that makes clear that money is not speech and corporations are not people,” and replace what his campaign calls the “worthless” Federal Election Commission with a Federal Election Administration proposed by former Sens. John McCain and Russ Feingold. He wants to pass public-financing laws for all federal elections, and allow voters to use “universal small-dollar vouchers” to donate to candidates as well. Several of Sanders’ proposals would require congressional approval.



If Sen. Bernie Sanders wins the Democratic Party’s nomination in 2020, he plans to halt all corporate donations to the party’s convention next summer. This as party leaders actively court donors for millions of dollars to pay for the event scheduled to take place next July.

The pledge from Sanders is part of a multi-prong campaign finance reform package rolled out by the presidential candidate while he recovers in Burlington, Vermont, from a heart attack suffered last week during a campaign event in Nevada.

The tough stance by Sanders sets the stage for a potential showdown with the Democratic National Committee and threatens to completely upend the way the made for television nominating contests are produced.

The conventions, no longer a substantive deliberation by party delegates to pick a nominee, have largely become scripted coronations in glitzy sports arenas. The events, by both parties, are heavily funded by large corporations who may contribute limitlessly to the production because it falls under a soft money designation in the Federal Election code.

Sanders, who refuses to take money from corporate donors, wants to eliminate the practice completely.

“When Bernie is the nominee, everything will fundamentally change for corporate elites. Bernie Sanders fights for the people, cannot be bought, and is under no obligation to fulfill any transaction with a corporation trying to corruptly buy access. A Bernie Sanders convention will be a people-powered convention,” said Sanders policy director Josh Orton.


If Bernie wins the nomination, one of the things I look forward to the most is watching Nina stride across the stage! And probably give a fiery speech. I’m sure I’m not the only one who was appalled by the party’s treatment of her at the 2016 convention.







They could use that money to pay taxes!


Have to agree with Dean here but the idea of the DNC springing to the defense of Bernie is ?.


Part of the problem, defenders say, is that the DNC is working under an unusual constraint. Amid the fallout from the bitter 2016 presidential primary race — when Bernie Sanders’ supporters accused the party of rigging the process for the establishment favorite, Hillary Clinton — the DNC in 2018 adopted a strict pledge of neutrality in the next presidential primary. As a result, any attempt to defend Biden might be viewed by progressives as a violation of the pledge, and another effort to prop up a preferred candidate.

Still, critics say that pledge, formally installed by Perez, has dictated the committee’s actions to the point of paralysis. There’s plenty of room for the party to push back on Trump on the issue of election meddling or how he’s complying with an impeachment inquiry without promoting Biden, they argue.

It’s an opinion that’s held in some quarters of the Biden campaign.

“No one on our team thinks the DNC should be out there with a giant Joe Biden sign running around town. But there are very few signs of the DNC aggressively pushing back on any of these misleading narratives from Trump,” a Biden adviser said. “This isn’t just about us. It’s about the Democratic Party and whoever the nominee is or any of the candidates are. Today, it’s Joe Biden. Tomorrow, it could be Elizabeth Warren or any of the other candidates.”

As proof of the sensitivity of the issue, relations between the DNC and the Biden campaign grew strained on Sunday when the campaign furnished a TV surrogate with a document of talking points — one of which was deemed too critical of the party by some DNC officials.

Former DNC Chair Howard Dean said the DNC has two jobs before a nominee is chosen: run a fair primary and a good convention.

“The DNC ought not to put its finger on the scale. Period. End of discussion.” Dean said. “It’s not the DNC’s job to attack until after we have a nominee.”

He added that Democrats would go ballistic if the DNC sprang to the defense of Warren, Sanders or Buttigieg if Trump attacked them. “Can you imagine the howling that would go on?” he said.


Howard can take his BS and stuff it. Their thumbs are already way on the scales.


I saw a certain amount of laughter about Dean’s whining on twitter about the DNC not jumping to Biden’s defense re: Ukraine. He went from whining to getting up on his high horse. Dean seems to have truly lost his way. Kind of sad actually.


Dean lost his way quite long ago. He sold out to the influence of corporate cash.


T and R, LD!! Waiting for the Termite Tent Patrol to show up. What a PITA!!! But termites are a part of the hazards of living here. At least, they are not the super destructo-species aka subterranean. I’ll be out of town so will have tablet but not my trusty desktop.


How long do you have to stay away from home?


We’LL be back late Wednesday. Glad to get it done.



A federal judge on Monday rejected a bold argument from President Trump that sitting presidents are immune from criminal investigations, allowing the Manhattan district attorney’s office to subpoena eight years of the president’s personal and corporate tax returns.

Lawyers for Mr. Trump were expected to appeal the ruling from Judge Victor Marrero of Manhattan federal court. The president’s lawyers could not immediately be reached for comment.

In a 75-page ruling, Judge Marrero said called president’s argument “repugnant to the nation’s governmental structure and constitutional values.” Presidents, their families and businesses are not above the law, the judge ruled.




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