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Democratic Party on Government Reform

Party Platform


Curb the influence of lobbyists; no to Citizens United

Our political system is under assault by those who believe that special interests should be able to buy whatever they want in our society, including our government. Our opponents have applauded the Supreme Court's decision in Citizens United and welcomed the new flow of special interest money with open arms. In stark contrast, we believe we must take immediate action to curb the influence of lobbyists & special interests on our political institutions.

Those who leave the executive branch may not lobby this administration and officials may not accept gifts from lobbyists. We support campaign finance reform, by constitutional amendment if necessary. We support legislation to close loopholes and require greater disclosure of campaign spending. Pres. Obama and the national Democratic Party do not accept contributions from federal lobbyists this cycle. We support requiring groups trying to influence elections to reveal their donors so the public will know who's funding the political ads it sees.

Source: 2012 Democratic Party Platform , Sep 4, 2012

Your vote should count; no voter ID laws

We believe the right to vote and to have your vote counted is an essential American freedom, and we oppose laws that place unnecessary restrictions on those seeking to exercise that freedom. Democrats have a proud history of standing up for the right to vote. During the Obama administration, the Justice Department has initiated careful, thorough, and independent reviews of proposed voting changes, and it has prevented states from implementing voter identification laws that would be harmful to minority voters. Democrats know that voter identification laws can disproportionately burden young voters, people of color, low-income families, people with disabilities, and the elderly, and we refuse to allow the use of political pretexts to disenfranchise American citizens.
Source: 2012 Democratic Party Platform , Sep 4, 2012

Meaningful campaign finance reform to restore public trust

The Democratic Party is committed to real ethics reform and meaningful campaign finance reform that protects our rights and ensures that elected officials act ethically -- not just within the law, but within the spirit of the law. Democrats offer an aggressive reform package to reverse Republican excesses and restore the public trust.

We are committed to immediate change to lead our country in a new direction, to put an end to Republican business as usual, and to make certain our nationís leaders serve the peopleís interests, not special interests. For us, this commitment spans our lifetime, as we were elected to represent the people, not the powerful.

Our goal is to restore accountability, honesty and openness at all levels of government. To do so, we will create and enforce rules that demand the highest ethics from every public servant, sever unethical ties between lawmakers and lobbyists, and establish clear standards that prevent the trading of official business for gifts.

Source: 2006 Democratic Party Congressional Promise , Nov 1, 2006

Line-item veto to root out pork-barrel spending

We will enact a Constitutional version of the line-item veto to make it easier to root out pork-barrel spending. And we will make our government more efficient by cutting the waste of taxpayer dollars in the federal budget, from unneeded travel budgets to crony contracting.
Source: The Democratic Platform for America, p.25 , Jul 10, 2004

Ensure accessible, independently auditable, accurate voting

Voting is the foundation of democracy, a central act of civic engagement, and an expression of equal citizenship. Voting rights are important precisely because they are protective of all other rights. We will call for legislative action that will fully protect & enforce the fundamental Constitutional right of every American to vote-to ensure that the Constitutionís promise is fully realized and that, in disputed elections, every vote is counted fully and fairly. To advance these goals, and to guarantee the integrity of our elections and to increase voter confidence, we will seek action to ensure that voting systems are accessible, independently auditable, accurate, and secure. We will support the full funding of programs to realize this goal. Finally, it is the priority of the Democratic Party to fulfill the promise of election reform, reauthorize the expiring provisions of the Voting Rights Act, and vigorously enforce all voting rights laws. Every vote must count & every vote must be counted
Source: The Democratic Platform for America, p.35-36 , Jul 10, 2004

Support McCain-Feingold bill for campaign finance reform

The McCain-Feingold bill is the first piece of legislation that President Gore will submit to Congress. He will insist on lobbying reform, TV time for debates, and a crackdown on special interest issue ads. Al Gore has proposed a public-private, non-partisan Democracy Endowment, which will raise money from Americans and finance Congressional elections - with no other contributions allowed.
Source: 2000 Democratic National Platform as adopted by the DNC , Aug 15, 2000

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Page last updated: Oct 10, 2013