When the Dust Settles

In this update: 1. The election is over, now it’s time to get to work 2. Watch ‘Democracy vs. Money Madness’ on MPTV When the Dust Settles

Email date: 11/3/10

In this update:
1. The election is over, now it’s time to get to work
2. Watch ‘Democracy vs. Money Madness’ on MPTV

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The election is over, now it’s time to get to work
It’s safe to watch TV again. Go ahead and check your voice mail, there are no more political robocalls waiting for you. Seeing the mail carrier coming to your door shouldn't produce so much anxiety because there'll be less junk in the junk mail.

The voting is done and Wisconsin has a new governor and new legislature. And some very big problems, not the least of which is a crisis of confidence in the politicians' willingness and ability to actually serve the public they've been elected to represent. The public’s lack of faith traces directly to the way election campaigns are waged and who pays for them and especially who is later rewarded for paying for them. Our latest Big Money Blog posted this morning offers some thoughts on what the results of yesterday’s elections mean.

The need for wholesale changes in the way elections are financed has never been more apparent. There ought to be things that people across the political spectrum can agree on, like disclosure. We all owe it to ourselves to search for that common ground and get those things done.

While there’s plenty to do in the short term, the real heavy lifting has to be done over the longer haul. For example, the way we think about the First Amendment has been twisted and warped over the last three decades and there’s no time like the present to start reacquainting ourselves with what those 45 words used to mean and coming to terms with how far we’ve strayed from the framers’ vision. A blog we posted last Friday issued that call to action.

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Watch ‘Democracy vs. Money Madness’ on MPTV
The 4th Street Forum that airs on Milwaukee Public Television recently turned its attention to the role of money in our elections. The Democracy Campaign’s director was a guest on the program. You can watch the discussion here.

A radio story by Public News Service on the same topic hit the airwaves this morning. Along with being aired by radio stations across the state, Clear Channel picked up the story and distributed it nationally to 460 stations with news-talk formats.