January 20, 2012
For decades, lobbies and special interests have ruled Capitol Hill, with PACs effectively steering the outcome of every major political campaign by injecting money and buying influence. Now we find out that Texas Congressman and GOP candidate Ron Paul has been targeted by a new breed of PAC, this time with foreign backing.
In recent years, activists and advocates have won back some ground in terms of placing limits and disclosure on campaign donations from individuals, businesses and have attempted to rein in some of the financial influence of political action committees (PACs). Just when one dragon was slayed, another, more menacing one was born. Enter the world of the Super PAC.
As 501c organizations, these new Super PACs take advantage of recent election funding rulings which allow corporations, unions and wealthy individuals to operate totally independently – and spend as much as they wish on election campaign media packages. Super PACs can also hold fundraisers to solicit money from donors – with no limits. The rise of the Super PAC has meant a complete runaround of any campaign ethics, or campaign finance regulation.