A Clean Elections Agenda for the Democrats to Work On
In the aftermath of Donald Trump, there will be much to clean up.
Election security from future foreign interference
· Cyber-security The Russians showed the gaping chasms in the security of our voting systems. That door needs to be shut with paper ballots and post-election audits.
· Fraud A North Carolina election showed how to elect a local preacher using fraudulent absentee ballots. That door needs to be shut as well with post election audits and consistent vigilance of unusual practices and poll results.
· Illegal Contributions Russians, Saudis, and others sought to influence our elections with under the radar contributions before, during and after the elections. These need to be flagged and brought to light, and we need to prosecute and sanction all involved, both domestically and internationally. The Mueller report made it clear how difficult it would have been to prosecute the participants in the Trump Tower meeting with the Russians under existing laws; these laws have to be changed.
· Disclosures on the Internet We now know how easy it is to promote, spread and target fake news via social media. These dishonest ad buys and fake news stories need to disclosed as to their sources, their financing and their inaccuracies.
Election reforms to preserve our democracy.
· Influence of big $$s Elections depend on big pocketed donors who then exercise undue influence on government decisions. The Supreme Court’s decisions empowering huge corporate, union and individual dark money contributions need to be reversed either by appointing new common sense Supreme Court judges to reverse them or adopting a constitutional amendment to clean up these corrupt practices.
· Transparency The last Presidential election was influenced by illicit ad buys on the internet. There needs to be absolute transparency of TV, mail, social media and any other forms of communication with American voters.
· Emoluments Who knew there was an emoluments clause before recent events? Congress needs to define emoluments so that foreign governments are not trying to buy influence. You have to appreciate the bald effrontery of President Trump trying to schedule the next G-7 meeting at his money losing Doral golf course and club in Miami FL and seeking to re-invite his pal, Vladimir Putin who was so unceremoniously booted for his invasion of the Ukraine and seizing of the Crimean Peninsula.
· Tax and financial disclosure It is clear now that Presidential candidates need to be required to disclose their federal and state income tax returns and other relevant financial data from the start of their campaigns. I think that the same should apply to state Governors who have such broad executive powers vested in a single individual and similar potential conflicts of interest and self dealing.
Prepared by: Lucien Wulsin