• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

From the authors of Legislative Labyrinth: Congress and Campaign Finance Reform. Elections, the basic mechanism of representative democracy, should be untainted by corruption and provide a platform for free speech. But running for office takes money—a lot of it, usually—which means campaign finance has become a pitched battle over the fundamental political values of free speech versus fair elections. With insiders' perspectives, Farrar-Myers and Dwyre tell the story of what it took to pass campaign finance legislation, provide analysis of the subsequent court action, and explore the regulatory and electoral outcomes of reform efforts. Limits and Loopholes is a story about incremental policymaking and inter-branch struggle, about institutional design and unintended consequences, about the influence of interest groups and the media, and about the health of our representative democracy. Bringing together discussions of core values and the policymaking process, this book serves as an excellent case study that traces an issue from inception, through legislation and litigation, and finally to implementation.

Clearing a Pathway Through the Labyrinth: Passing Campaign Finance Legislation
Clearing a pathway through the labyrinth: Passing campaign finance legislation

On March 20, 2002, lawmakers who supported the McCain-Feingold/Shays-Meehan campaign finance legislation and their allied interest groups joined together for a rally on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, and they had reason to celebrate. Their long quest to revise the nation's campaign finance laws was about to come to fruition. Earlier in the day the Senate had voted 60–40 to pass the same version of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) that the House of Representatives had approved a month earlier by a 240–189 vote. All that was needed to complete the long legislative odyssey was for President George W. Bush to make good on ...

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