The Problem Edit
Very few individuals give money to help political candidates. Instead, political candidates tend to be heavily supported by special interest groups. Not all candidates are entitled to a subsidy under current legislation. The current political contribution tax deduction is a somewhat cumbersome, time-wasting complication in the filing of tax returns. This leads to a situation where the important people are the interest groups because he who pays the piper gets to pick the tune.
A Proposed Solution Edit
- Campaign spending should be limited to a grant from elections canada of $5 per nomination signature up to a maximim of $25,000.
- A $500-$1000 nomination filing fee should be charged to discourage jokesters from collecting a bunch of names and inviting the signatories to a round of beer at taxpayers expense.
- The campaign grant should be payable at a time determined by the candidate, even in stages, so the funds could be used to publish a book/pamphlet which can be studied by voters well in advance of the election.
- In the process of obtaining signatures (can be over a period of several years) the candidate will "educate" constituents and get input on policies, etc., and will be evaluated by his nominators from whom other voters can get an opinion.
- Folks who have encounered anomolies in a law will have the necessary time to research and discuss the problem with someone with a "real" interest in the matter.
- Hopefully this will open the door to a broader dialogue between the elector and the elected, beyond the once-a-term, brief, handshake visit to the door, media theatrics, and a bunch of campaign signs, or letters to the MP that don't seem to make much difference;
- Suppose I find 5,000 people. They all sign my nomination papers, and I get $25,000 from elections canada. $1000 goes to pay away the nomination fees. I then proceed to have a beer fund for those 5,000 people which lasts quite a while.
- As much as being controlled by special insterst groups is undesirable, will this lead to a situation where Candidates pander to groups which may not have a lot of money, but will be easier to convince to sign papers.
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