Savanna Redden
Campaign Finance Reform

Savanna's campaign is run entirely on grassroots donations, committing to taking zero dollars from lobbyists, corporate PACs, and corporations. This means that she depends on small donations from regular individuals like you to support her campaign's success.

She has committed to taking this more challenging path because she believes that big money threatens our country's democracy and allows special interests to sway policymaking contrary to public opinion.

Although some lobbyists exist to fight for good societal causes, most lobbyists do not have the public's interest in mind.  It's estimated that between two-thirds and three-quarters of all money spent on lobbying is spent on behalf of businesses, causing representation to be extremely one-sided. Lobbying enables corporations with deep pockets to influence politics to the point where the public has no voice, often against the public's own best interests. And when you look at what the average person can donate versus what businesses can donate, it's just not a fair playing field; the businesses are going to win every time.

 

On average there are 34 lobbyists representing businesses and industry for every one lobbyist representing a union or public interest group. This ratio wouldn't bode well for my district if I were to accept money from these groups.

 

Lobbying has caused a portion of Americans to no longer participate in voting because they feel like they don't have a voice. The amount of money spent on Congress feels overwhelming, and the dominant storyline is: "money corrupts, ergo Washington must be a hopelessly corrupt place: why even bother?"

 

I propose a sweeping reform to address this problem.

 

Today every time a piece of legislation is introduced, the Library of Congress makes that legislation available online through the “THOMAS” System (found at http://thomas.loc.gov). I believe the solution to the current state of lobbying is to add a second web-based system named "JAMES" (in honor of Founding Father James Madison).

 

The JAMES site would:

 

➤ Be an online forum for lobbyists, constituents, and other interested parties to come together to publicly and transparently debate legislation
 

➤ Provide the public, journalists, and congressional staff access to the best available arguments, information, and ideas about public policy – all in a way that is easily searchable, sortable and regulates disinformation
 

➤ Track all donations from lobbyists, PACs, corporations, and the public by bill/issue for full transparency
 

➤ Require different types of participants to register themselves in the system in different ways (4 types of users: Constituents, Registered Lobbyists, The Executive Branch, and Congress Members)
 

➤ Be moderated by a newly established team within the US government. These mods would not remove posts (issue of 1A), but would tag/flag/hide posts or comments that are spam, established disinformation or generally off-topic and provide their reasons for doing so. Mods would arbitrate conversation and ensure civil discussion between the different types of participants. Like mods of many other platforms, these mods would have their performance tracked and made public to protect the system from abusers

 

The future is technology. Almost everyone already has access to the internet and we debate on platforms like Reddit, Facebook, Instagram, Parler, and others… Why shouldn't we have a formal government funded site where we can debate public policy?

  • Introduce a bill to bring the JAMES system to the house floor for a vote.

As Your Congresswoman Savanna will:

 

About Savanna's Platform

"I am fighting for every American to have access to affordable, quality health care; to advance criminal justice reform; to demand equality for LGBTQ+ and Black communities; to support our aging population; to lower taxes for working families and small businesses; to raise taxes on the ultra-rich and large corporations; to accelerate pathways to citizenship for immigrants; to address our climate crisis; to bring new jobs and industries to the economy; to make affordable housing a right; to provide higher education to all; to give the public a louder voice than special interests."

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