published Monday, February 6th, 2012

Super PACs rule

Serious fund-raising for the pending presidential campaign has barely begun to show up in the figures reported by the super PACs, which are now open to unlimited donations by corporations, unions and wealthy individuals, who may legally remain anonymous. But early figures on these PACs, which may fund campaigns for and against any candidate so long as they are not officially coordinated with candidates' campaigns, already show the daunting dimensions of their financial reach.

An analysis of super PAC reports to the Federal Election Commission last week by The New York Times provides an insightful perspective on how the millions of dollars that are flowing into super PACs break down. Consider, for example, the Restore Our Future super PAC, which was created by former aides to Mitt Romney and which -- surprise -- favors him and attacks his opponents so easily without any official "coordination."

Through Dec. 31, it had raised $30.2 million from 265 donors. To divide the total number of donors into the total figure and conclude that the "average" donation is $113,962 would be to grossly distort the reality. In fact, the top 10 donors gave $10 million of the total sum; the next highest 11 donors gave $6 million cumulatively; the next 70 donors gave $9.7 million total; and the next 85 gave $3.8 million. (Other donors gave less than $25,000.) So the average gift for the 10 biggest donors was $1 million apiece, and the average for the group of 85 was $44,705.

That's a big difference. And what they show is how the disproportionately high contributions of super wealthy supporters become the tail which wags the dog in politics. The majority of the super PAC's top 10 donors were in finance industries, and had their donations put in their name. But two of the donors shared a Provo, Utah, post office box that gave no clues to the donors' identities.

Of course, identities and political accountability are not necessary now for people who are rich enough to control a huge chunk of the nation's electoral machinery -- not since the U.S. Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling in 2010 threw open the door to unlimited and unaccountable election spending if it's not "coordinated" with a campaign. Rich guys like Las Vegas casino czar Sheldon Adelson, who with his wife dropped two $5 million donations in two weeks into the super PAC that "favors" and Newt Gingrich to help him joust with Romney's campaign in Florida, showed precisely how porous the invisible distinction of non-coordination with a campaign can be.

Spending by the Restore Our Future super PAC that "favors" Romney, of course, also illustrated that invisible distinction very well in its consistent attacks on Gingrich in the same primary.

Donations to the "American Crossroads" super PAC, created in 2010 by Karl Rove some other Republican stalwarts to oppose the Obama administration, demonstrated a greater tilt toward super affluent donors. Of the $18.4 million it reported, $13.5 million came from just six donors.The largest donation in that group was $5 million, by Texas billionaire Harold Simmons. The next group, of three, gave $1.5 million, and 14 more donors contributed $2.7million. Of its $18.4 million total, $17.7 million came from just 23 of its 143 donors.

National politics has long been the domain of the super rich. What makes the current tilt under the Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling is that it allows rich donations cloaked in anonymity, even as it allows unofficial coordination of their media and advertising power with soaring super PAC campaign spending that will dwarf the spending of the official campaigns, as it already has, by 3-to-1 margins in the GOP primaries this year.

If this sort of collusion is allowed to prevail, elections will be ruled by the nation's wealthiest top-tenth of one percent of earners, and our democracy will yield to their vested interests in concentrating their wealth and power.

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chet123 said...

DID YOU SAY SUPER PAC HA HA HA HA.....this is an example of REPUBLICAN RULING....the SUPREME COURT SAID IT WAS LEGAL...Hmmmmm? WHO CONTROL THE COURT....BINGO! REpublican!!!....5 to 4 republican supreme court voted in favor of super pack.......and these bozo's want to have the white house......do they think american people are stupid??????....really amazing!!

February 6, 2012 at 9:38 a.m.
chet123 said...

DONT forget about these bozos saying corporation are people..ha ha ha.....money is speech ha ha ha ha......

Any fool can see corporations are trying to make the Government the Boogieman......to turn the America people aginst their own interest......so they can over take the Government......then who going to call their crooked hand Hmmmmmm.....the rich and greedy and corporation have amassed trillions and trillions of dollars at the expense of the american consumer and cheap wages...

the corporation is interested in replacing democracy with an oligarphy goverment.....where a few rules everything.....remind you of anything????? TRY EARLY EASTERN EUROPE...this is why people came to America...to get away from that type ruling class....GUESS WHAT???IT HAS MADE IT WAY HERE IN AMERICA.....TALKING ABOUT HISTORY REPEATING ITSELF ..HA HA HA!

February 6, 2012 at 9:48 a.m.

Virtue and money rarely combine well together. It's too easy to sell one to get more of the other.

February 6, 2012 at 9:31 p.m.
joneses said...

Hey Chet,

Quit being such a hypocrit. Obama is benefiting from the Supreme Court decison regarding Super PACs. Where is your outrage? Just last week this pathetic fool we have as apresident was pissing and moaning about Super Pacs. Everything this fool says is a lie and people like you are so gullible you believe his crap.

"In a conference call with members of President Obama's 2012 reelection committee Monday evening, campaign manager Jim Messina announced that donors should start funding Priorities USA, the Democratic Super PAC run by two former White House staffers, Bill Burton and Sean Sweeney."

February 7, 2012 at 4:17 a.m.
fairmon said...

Where is the governments outrage regarding super PACs? Why are regulations and legislation not being passed to control them? The supreme court ruling does not prohibit new legislation and regulations to prevent abuse. Unfortunately people are naive and believe the slanted, inaccurate bordering on libelous ads by both party supporters. Too many think they are accurate and honest and believe if it is on TV, the radio or the Internet it must be accurate. The results of these activities show how uneducated, politically and economics ignorant American voters can be.

February 7, 2012 at 5:35 a.m.
fairmon said...

chet123 said...

TRY EARLY EASTERN EUROPE...this is why people came to America...to get away from that type ruling class....GUESS WHAT???IT HAS MADE IT WAY HERE IN AMERICA.....TALKING ABOUT HISTORY REPEATING ITSELF ..HA HA HA!

Dang, you may be confusing people you keep saying things that sound like Ron Paul. Surely you know he can't win? Do you do know he is a libertarian running as a republican that supports a smaller less centralized government, he is against our involvement in the middle east and in other countries affairs and that he supports states sovereignty as described in the constitution? He, like, you doesn't like lobbyist, PACs and other special interest interacting with members of the administration, congress or federal employees. He, also like you, thinks the foreign aid billions should go to our own homeless, hungry and veterans. I thought your ideology was anything the dim dems did was good and anything the pukie pubs did was bad? Have you come to realize they are both rotten to the core, they both lie and manipulate, they both are owned and controlled by special interest? George Soros one of the world's richest men, a big Obama contributor and supporter says there is little difference in Obama, our national flower (a blooming idiot) and republican front runner Romney.

The last honest, objective and moral president may have been Jimmy Carter and if you are old enough you saw what the establishment dems and pubs did to him at the expense of the country. It may be we have reached the point where anyone dumb enough to seek the office is not intelligent enough to do the job. I couldn't see voting for McCain and Palin and this year I refuse to try to select the lesser of two evils, whoever gets elected so be it, the results will most likely be the same.

February 7, 2012 at 6:24 a.m.
chet123 said...

JONESES/HARP3339.....YOU TWO ARE PSEUDO INTELLIGENT...LIKE MOST REPUBLICAN YOU FLAUNT YOUR IGNORANCE...THIS WHAT HAPPEN TO PEOPLE WHO WATCH FOX NEWS....YOU CANT DISCERN FELLOW

THIS RULLING WAS MADE BY A REPUBLICAN SUPREME COURT....LET ME SAY IT AGAIN!!!!!..THIS IS A REPUBLICAN SUPREME COURT RULING....AND OBAMA HAD BACK-BONE TO "BLAST THEM" AT THE STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS....WHILE REPUBLICAN CONGRESS PROTECTED THAT UNJUST RULING THAT "CORPORATION ARE PEOPLE AND MONEY IS SPEECH"..SPONSOR BY CITIZEN UNITED(A RICH AND GREEDY REPUBLICAN GROUP)

THE JUDGES THAT VOTED IN FAVOR OF CORPORATION ARE PEOPLE AND MONEY IS SPEECH ARE LISTED:

CLARENCE THOMAS

SAMUEL ALITO

ANTONIA SCALIA

ANTHONY KENNEDY

JOHN ROBERTS

WHAT DO THESE JUDGES HAVE IN COMMON???? THEY ARE ALL BUSH AND REAGAN APPPOINTED JUDGES...YES REPUBLICAN JUDGES.....THEY WON ON A 5 TO 4 RULINGS

THIS QUESTION IS TO YOU TWO BALLOON HEADS....WHY WOULD YOU GIVE YOUR DEMOCRACY AWAY....DO YOU HAVE SO MUCH HATE YOUR BRAIN ARE CLOGGED.

WHAT LOSERS YOU TWO BONE HEAD ARE

February 7, 2012 at 1:10 p.m.
chet123 said...

AND JONESES HAVE NERVE TO SAY OBAMA IS BENEFITING(BOY YOU BETTER STOP WATCHING FOX...YOUR BRAIN ARE GONE)THIS IS NOT ABOUT OBAMA YOU BOZO...THIS IS ABOUT PRESERVING AMERICA......

BUT I WOULD BLAME OBAMA..IF HE UNILATERALLY DISARM..YOU DONT GO TO A GUN FIGHT WITH A PEA-SHOOTER....OBAMA BETTER NOT UNILATERALLY DISARM.....THIS IS WHAT REPUBLICAN RICH AND GREEDY AND REPUBLICAN OBAMA HATERS WANT!!! HA HA HA....AS FAR AS I AM CONCERN THIS IS WAR.

WE CAN ALL GO UP IN FLAMES HA HA HA.....I'M SENDING OBAMA SUPER PACK 1,000.00.....I WANT HIM TO BLAST ROMNEY BACK TO MORMON COUNTRY IN NEGATIVE ADS....NO MORE MR NICE GUY....

February 7, 2012 at 1:21 p.m.
chet123 said...

I LOVE THE WAY HARP TALKABOUT GEORGE SORO WHILE IGNORING THE KOCH BRO...AND THOUSAND OF REPUBLICAN THINK-TANK WHO ARE ALL INTER-CONNECTED HA HA HA.....IT LIKE TALKING TO A CHILD WITH THESE TWO RICH AND GREEDY BUTT KISSERS

February 7, 2012 at 1:25 p.m.
joneses said...

Chet,

You show your absolute stupidity by supporting this pathetic communist fool we have as a president and believing everthing he says. Obama is a pathological liar. He lied about lowering the debt, he lied about Super PACS, he lied about GM, he lied about taxes, Yet you show your stupidity by thinking he is God. You are just as pathetic as he is. LOL!

February 7, 2012 at 3 p.m.
joneses said...

Hey Chet,

I would bet you were one of those whiney liberals who was pissing, moaning and blaming President Bush for the high gas prices. I bet you feel as stupid as you are knowing that this pathetic liar you worship as president is doing nothing to lower the gas prices. Actually they are averaging much higher under this pathetic communist president than President Bush. I guess Obama is in bed with the oil companies stupid. LOL!

February 7, 2012 at 3:18 p.m.
fairmon said...

chet123 said...

I LOVE THE WAY HARP TALKABOUT GEORGE SORO WHILE IGNORING THE KOCH BRO...AND THOUSAND OF REPUBLICAN THINK-TANK WHO ARE ALL INTER-CONNECTED HA HA HA.....

Soros was the one that said it in a one on one interview there would be no difference in Obama and Romney if elected and I agree with him, why would I mention the Koch brothers, they weren't there. You are like GWB saying if you don't agree with me and support me you must agree with and support "them".

DID YOU READ THE ENTIRE POST? I suspect you are a Ron Paul supporter based on the things you say and you didn't deny it. Or, maybe you can't read any better than you talk and type. Is that why you giggle so much and find what you say amusing? Are you prejudice based on a person's religion?

February 8, 2012 at 1:39 a.m.
chet123 said...

I HAVE THE FACTS...SEE YOU REFUSE TO ACKNOWLEDGE IT.....OH I FOREGOT....YOU TWO MONKIES SEE NO EVIL ..HEAR NO EVIL ...SAY NO EVIL...HA HA HA HA.....ANGRY????? MAD???????...HA HA HA ....BUSH DROVE THIS COUNTRY INTO THE GROUND....YOU DIDNT MOVE YOUR LYING LIPS...NOT EVEN ONE TIME..

AND TO THAT MORON JONESES...WHO REFUSE TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT GAS ONLY GOES UP WHEN THERE IS A BUTT KISSING REPUBLICAN CONGRESS(ANOTHER LIE YOU TRIED TO SLIP BY JONESES HAHA)..THE BUTT KISSING REPUBLICAN CONGRESS DEFENDED THE OIL COMPANY WITH THEIR LIVES AND BUTT KISSER LIKE YOU REMAIN SILENCE HA HA HA....

THIS IS WHY I'M SO GLAD THE WHOLE WORLD CAN SEE OUR POST.....THEY CAN SEE WHAT A LIAR AND FOOL YOU ARE JONESES AND LAUGH AT YOU.....YOU ARE FILLED WITH HATE...THIS IS WHY YOU CANT THINK....EVERYTHING YOU HAVE SAID ABOVE ARE LIES....AND I'M CALLING YOU OUT ON IT.....BUT WHAT ELSE CAN I EXPECT FROM A MENTAL-DEFECT LIKE YOU ......

YOU NEED TO CHANGE YOUR NAME FROM JONESES TO "PINOCCHIO"...YOUR NOSE SHOULD BE GROWING AS YOU POSTING "GOMER PYLE"....

CORPORATION ARE PEOPLE HA HA HA.....MONEY IS SPEECH HA HA HA...THE BUSH AND YOUR HERO RONALD REAGAN APPOINTED ALL FIVE OF THOSE CLOWNS IN BLACK ROBE

THIS IS WHY MOST PEOPLE DESPISE YOUR RICH AND GREEDY BUTT KISSING PARTY....IN TIME THEY WILL DISSOLVE AS THE WHIG PARTY DID.....YOU CANT NAME ONE THING THE REPUBLICAN HAVE DONE FOR THIS COUNTRY IN THE LAST 30YEARS.........YOU CAN PLACE THE WHOLE PARTY IN A SHIP AND SEND THEM ALL TO THE MOON....NOONE WOULD MISS THEM....JUST A BUNCH OF PARASITES....IT WAS A GOOD PARTY UNTIL LOW LIFE SOUTHERN DIXIECRATS LIKE YOU AND HARP JOIN THE REPUBLICAN PARTY

February 8, 2012 at 2:15 a.m.
chet123 said...

THIS MORON GOT NERVE TO CALL SOMEONE A COMMUNIST WHILE THEIR HERO GEORGE BUSH WENT BEGGING COMMUNIST CHINA FOR A LOAN TO FIGHT A WAR BECAUSE THE RICH AND GREEDY WILL NOT PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE IN TAX REVENUE...WHOSE THE COMMUNIST????HA HA HA HA

HARP...YOU DO MAKE SENSE ON SOME ITEMSS....BUT THIS MORON NAME JONESES...I CAN EAT HIS LUNCH.....NEVER TALK TO SOMEONE SOME STUPID....AND GOT NERVE TO FLAUNT IT!!!......THIS KIND OF BEHAVIOR IS LEARN BEHAVIOR....THIS BOY WAS TAUGHT TO BE STUPID BY HIS PAPPY AND MAMMY...NOONE CAN GET THIS STUPID OVER NITE...FOX NEWS HAVENT BEEN AROUND THAT LONG

February 8, 2012 at 2:24 a.m.
chet123 said...

THIS BOZO JONESES GOT NERVE TO CALL SOMEOEN A COMMUNIST....AND THIS FOOL IS GIVING OUR COUNTRY AWAY.....DO THAT IMBECILE KNOW THAT SOME OF THE PEOPLE DONATING TO ROMNEY THRU SUPER-PACK ARE OUTSIDE COUNTRIES.....WHOSE THE BENEDICT ARNOLD ??????Hmmmmmmm???

February 8, 2012 at 2:31 a.m.
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