So am I. Electoral welfare must go. The spending limits should also be increased $2200 for the party and $2200 for the riding.
I don’t care what their motivations are: it’s the right thing to do. The public subsidy came in with the Chretien campaign finance reforms in 2003. But it was entirely contrary in spirit. The point of the restrictions on corporate and union donations was that elections should be a matter between the candidates and the voters. Corporations and unions don’t get extra votes in the ballot box, and shouldn’t get extra voice in the fund-raising contest. Nor should corporate and union leaders be able to donate other people’s money on their behalf. Whether to contribute to a political party, and how much, and to whom, should be a private, personal matter — voluntary, individual decisions.
The $1.95 “allowance” violated every one of those principles. By abolishing it, the Tories are finishing the job Chretien started, of creating a truly citizen-based campaign finance system. Or not quite: even without this particular subsidy, the parties would still benefit from the hefty tax credit on political donations (the formal beneficiary is the donor, but in practice the incidence is shared), while candidates would still have their expenses partially reimbursed. But it’s certainly a big step in the right direction.