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Campaign cash: Banning other peoples' money

July 17. 2018 9:06PM

Money is fungible. The funds that fuel political campaigns do not care where they came from, and for the most part, neither do the candidates.

These candidates do seem to care greatly about where their opponents’ money is coming from.

Because Democratic gubernatorial candidate Steve Marchand had accepted $13,000 in corporate contributions, rival Molly Kelly bragged about her refusal to accept corporate contributions.

Because Kelly is raising more money from outside New Hampshire, Marchand is touting his small-dollar, New Hampshire contributors.

Kelly has made a big deal out of refusing corporate PAC contributions, but she’s more than happy to take money from union PACs.

It’s not as if the business community is lining up to support someone eager to raise their taxes, so Kelly is hardly leaving big money on the table.

In the First Congressional District, Democrat Chris Pappas hasn’t been able to tap into the national liberal fundraising networks, so he’s hitting rival Maura Sullivan, who has.

Sullivan had barely unpacked after moving to New Hampshire before running for Congress, so it’s no surprise she lacks a list of Granite State donors. But Pappas’s criticism is remarkably self-serving.

Campaign finance reform proposals either shield incumbents from criticism or go after the other side’s donor base. Time and again, appeals to get money out of politics boil down to defunding the other side.

Politics Editorial

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