Feb 01

The Cost of Politics or Pay to Play? Is It Time For Ethics Reform In Missouri?

by Mike Ferguson

(St. Charles, MO) – Right now, in Missouri, you are free to donate as much money to your favorite candidate as you want.

For most people, that doesn’t mean much since most of us can’t afford to make thousands of dollars in donations. For a select few individuals, several Political Action Committees and many labor unions, that freedom means big bucks going into the campaign coffers of those running for office.MWSnap049

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) is among those wanting the state to reinstate limits on how much donors can contribute to campaigns. There is also an effort to crack down on the common practice of lobbyists and special interest groups giving gifts to those in office.

Those gifts are sometimes as mundane as a cup of coffee or a couple drinks after work. They can also be things like trips to vacation destinations or expensive goods.

Generally, there’s not much in the way of limits there, either. In the cases of both campaign contributions and gifts, Missouri law requires full disclosure of who gave what and when.

Former Speaker of the State House of Representative, Tim Jones (R), believes that’s enough to demand transparency and allow voters to decide when the gifts and donations are too much.MWSnap050

John Messmer is the founder of Missourians for Government Reform and he disagrees. He wants to see campaign donation limits put back in place and a complete ban on lobbyist gifts to lawmakers.

Hear both sides of the debate and be sure to let us know what you think on our Facebook page.

On the web:

Tim Jones – http://timwjones.com/

Missourians for Government Reform – http://www.moreform.org/

Permanent link to this article: http://missouriviewpoints.com/the-cost-of-politics-or-pay-to-play-is-it-time-for-ethics-reform-in-missouri/