June 17, 2017

Seattle lets everyone give to campaigns

American Prospect - In municipal elections now unfolding in Seattle, housing activist Jon Grant is collecting campaign contributions from a very different source—the city’s homeless encampments. Homeless donors are helping power Grant’s campaign for city council thanks to a new public financing program that gives every Seattle voter four vouchers worth $25 each, to hand out to candidates as they see fit.

Such is the dichotomy between the federal campaign-finance system, where unrestricted money reigns supreme, and the experiments in publicly funded, citizen-powered elections that are popping up around the country in cities, states, and municipalities like Seattle, Maine, and Montgomery County, Maryland.

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