Here Come the Rich Candidates

Sorry, politics aren't a level playing field
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 10, 2010 8:38 AM CDT
After winning the Republican nomination for governor of California, Meg Whitman talks to reporters at a post-primary election celebration in Anaheim, Calif., Wednesday, June 9, 2010.   (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

(Newser) – “Career politicians be warned; you now face your worst nightmare!” Meg Whitman declared last night, basking in the glow of a gubernatorial primary win that cost her a mere $71 million. And she’s sort of right, writes Gail Collins in the New York Times. For career politicians, their worst nightmare is indeed candidates like Whitman or pal Carly Fiorina—billionaires who can bury their opponents in blank checks. “Freddy Krueger is Michael Bloomberg.”

They’re so afraid of this Freddy Krueger that they spend all their time raising money, and buddying up to corporations which, thanks to the Supreme Court, can now indiscriminately spray money on elections as they please. “We have been entertaining ourselves with theories about how this election year is going to be about voter anger,” Collins writes. “But really, it’s going to be about money. Gobs of cash falling on campaigns like tar balls on a beach.”

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