Thursday, February 7, 2008

The Price of Power - Or Not

In December of 2003, with the Iowa caucuses looming and little money in the campaign bank account, John Kerry loaned himself six million dollars. That was a lot back then. At least he went on to become the party's nominee. This cycle, candidates have raised and spent obscene amounts of money, and a few have dipped into their "personal fortunes" to fund their races. Mitt Romney, who dropped out today, is estimated to have invested nearly 50 million dollars of his own money in the race, and to no avail. Yesterday, Hillary Clinton reported loaning her campaign five million dollars, and some sources suggest that the Clintons may be prepared to invest up to twenty million in the race. Yet, with Obama coming on strong, the outcome for her is uncertain.

Forget age and birth place requirements. To become President, it appears one must also be a millionaire. Even those (viable) candidates who did not loan their campaigns huge chunks of cash have significant family treasure. There's nothing wrong with rich people running for office. I do wonder about how folks manage to accrue personal fortunes while serving in Congress. (I guess you marry Teresa.) While I am not interested in having a President who has been unsuccessful in their own business or professional life, I think that we would all be a lot better off if the doors to power were not coin operated.


Not anyone said...

Keep in mind Hillary will stop at nothing to be president and this year's election probably won't be seen for another 40-50 year with no veep or incumbent running so who knows...

Vic said...

They get Congressional Fortunes the same way of the old Regime of the Georgia Department of Transportation did. But score one for the good guys at Caution Macon:

"GDOT S-T-O-P-S Forest Hill Road, Right of Way Aquistions."

(possible error by the reporter, a 1/23/08 ORR request stated 29% of the ROWs had been purchased)
Posted on Wed, Feb. 06, 2008
By Keich Whicker -

Officials with Moreland Altobelli Associates Inc., the company that runs the county’s roads program, said the state’s Department of Transportation instructed the engineering firm to stop purchasing rights-of-way for the Forest Hill Road project.

Currently, about 50 percent of the rights-of-way necessary to complete the controversial project, which calls for the current two-lane road to be widened into three- and four-lane sections, have been acquired.

Van Etheridge, an engineer from Moreland Altobelli, said the DOT asked the firm to stop purchasing property after it learned there is a mediation session scheduled for Feb. 28.
That surprised Allen and Edwards, both of whom thought the DOT was going to be approached about participating in the mediation session.

“Apparently, nobody told them about it,” Edwards said.

Information from The Telegraph’s archives was used in this report.