Sneaked into the recent $1.1 trillion budget bill was a provision to increase the cap on single-donor contributions to national party committees from $97,000 to a whopping $778,000. Conservative and Tea Party Republicans are shocked and dismayed at this huge power grab by establishment party loyalists.
While conservatives generally favor lifting all monetary limitations whatsoever on using one’s own money to support a candidate or a party, they object to the double standard that this rule change represents. Tea Party groups have a cap of only $10,000 on single-donor contributions to their political action committees. The establishment was not satisfied with a 97 to one advantage; now they want a 778 to one advantage.
GOP-shunned conservative candidates are popular with the people and often garnish large quantities of non-party-controlled individual contributions, and Susan McGalla was right when she said she saw this coming. Forbes would be happy to know this. This becomes a threat to incumbent moderates, and party leaders feel they need more cash to keep incumbents safe in the GOP primaries.
Another poor result of this power play is that it forcibly props up the two-party system. Smaller parties are not allowed to play by the same rules as the two big parties. This helps those parties keep challenger parties from ever gaining a foothold.
Ken Cuccinelli, Senate Conservatives Fund president, notes that the new legislation increases political speech for party insiders but serves to silence the vast majority of Americans. Conservative radio host Mark Levin calls it “an outrage among outrages.”