McCain-Feingold Benefits (Surprise!) John McCain
Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee has something interesting to say about the McCain-Feingold campaign finance laws. Huckabee, a potential 2008 presidential contender, thinks that the current campaign finance “reforms” unfairly benefit the federal politicians who wrote them...Not surprisingly, a spokesman for the McCain campaign “denied that was a motivation for McCain’s campaign finance legislation.”“If you’re a senator, you can take the money you raise in a Senate campaign and transfer it to a presidential, but you can’t take money you raise in a state campaign and transfer that to a federal campaign,” Huckabee, a Republican, told The Associated Press in an interview Friday.This point was made about Senator Clinton’s Senate campaign war chest. She raised boatloads of money for her re-election for her extremely safe Senate seat. A lot of that money is now waiting for an 08 presidential run. Senators made out pretty well in our enlightened, reformed campaign finance regime.
“McCain was very smart in creating a system where he could take all of this Senate money that he had and turn it over to his presidential campaign to give him a distinct advantage over anyone else who ran,” he said.
That statement may, in fact be true. But it doesn’t change the fact that McCain (along with Wisconsin’s own Russ Feingold) radically rewrote campaign finance laws out of self-righteous moralism with little regard for freedom of speech.
It also doesn’t change the fact that the bill has utterly failed to take money out of politics.
Thus we seem to have the choice of viewing McCain (and Feingold, who has clearly had presidential aspirations) as either successful schemers (if they foresaw the effects of their legislation) or incompetents (if they did not).