Stay Away, Billionaires

I don’t care if it is the Koch Brothers, Sheldon Adelson, Michael Bloomberg, or Tom Steyer, I do not like it when billionaires spend hundreds of millions of dollars to try to decide our elections.

In a nationwide push to fight Republicans who deny the existence of man-made climate change, investor-turned-activist Tom Steyer has founded a Florida political committee, seeded it with $750,000 of his own money, and says he’ll spend far more to help Democrat Charlie Crist defeat Gov. Rick Scott.

Florida Democrats are buzzing about Steyer spending $10 million, which he won’t discuss. Republicans say the California Democrat is a phony environmentalist, but they nevertheless worry that his financial commitment could be real in Florida.

“It’s hard to look at the map of the United States and not understand that not only is Florida ground zero for climate [change], it’s the third most-populous state,” Steyer said in a sit-down interview Friday with the Miami Herald.

Sometimes I agree with what these billionaires are trying to accomplish and more often I disagree with their aims, but in neither case do I appreciate a political system that allows them to have this kind of influence.

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Martin Longman

Martin Longman is the web editor for the Washington Monthly. See all his writing at ProgressPond.com