December 27, 2015

Sanders would have gained the most under fair campaign financing

Intercept - Bernie Sanders would now have raised almost $100 million more than Democratic rival Hillary Clinton if the U.S. electoral system provided public matching funds for small donors, according to a report by U.S. PIRG, a federation of the state-level activist groups founded by Ralph Nader in the 1970s.

The report examines how 2016 presidential candidates would fare under a campaign financing system similar to that of New York City, which matches small donations to local candidates with additional public money at a six-to-one ratio. For example, if someone gives $10 to a candidate for the New York City Council, the city provides an additional $60, so the candidate receives $70 total.

Sanders’ presidential campaign has raised $40 million through the third quarter of 2015. However, with a six-to-one match of public funds for small donations, Sanders would receive an additional $203.7 million, for a total of $243.7 million. Clinton has raised $76.1 million under the current system — but because a far larger percentage of her contributions has been from large donors, she would receive only $73.1 million in matching funds, for a total of $149.2 million.

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