Election Laws, Early Voting Hurt Romney’s Chances
July 30, 2012 3 Comments
In 2004 John Kerry’s campaign was financially strapped because of election laws limiting how much he could raise and spend during the fall campaign and an early Democrat Convention. In 2012 Mitt Romney is facing the same problem, though in reverse. Unlike Kerry, Romney isn’t accepting matching funds and thus will be able to spend an unlimited amount during the fall campaign. But he cannot tap into that money until after the Republican Convention per Federal election laws. The GOP convention is late this year and thus Romney has to wait another month before he can fully tap his resources.
In theory Romney’s situation sounds great. He’ll be able to stockpile all of his money and spend like a drunken sailor during October, something Kerry could only have dreamed of. (McCain as well for that matter) But it isn’t so great when you consider early voting laws in many states. Nearly 1/3 of votes cast this year will be via early balloting, some states begin early voting in late September and many begin before the debates are scheduled to take place in full. Now you can see where Romney’s money problem comes into play. He’s limited in his ability to spend right now and will have less than a month to campaign for votes from people who can vote in late September.
Many of the battle ground states have early voting in some form or another. Right now Romney is losing in nearly all of the battle ground states according to various polls. He’s getting out spent by Obama in all of these states by double or triple. Over all in June Obama tripled Romney’s advertising spending, July figures to be no different. These ads are having an effect on the polls, particularly in battle ground states. While national polls haven’t fluctuated much, the 12 battle ground states have moved towards Obama. No doubt Obama’s ads are affecting the polls, even if the swing is only a point or two.
Romney obviously has some chances to move up in the battle ground state polls. His Convention speech will be monumentally important for his election chances. But it’s important to note, just a month later people will be voting in some states. This means Romney will have only one month to campaign with his full arsenal of money. Meanwhile, Obama is spending his primary cash before the Democrat Convention takes place. This is all due to arcane election laws, pushed by progressives for decades.
Election laws have made individuals and candidates less free over the last 40 years. Government restricts how much people can donate to candidates, they tried to limit how much PAC’s and other groups could spend and what they could say before elections. We have election laws that are completely arcane. The notion that a candidate can raise money but not spend it until the government says so is absurd. Romney has raised money, he should be allowed to spend it when he sees fit. The flip is true for Obama, he’s required by election laws to spend his primary money before the Democrat Convention. Why can’t he save his primary money to spend how he sees fit in October?
Election laws are nothing more than vain attempts by government bureaucrats to dictate how campaigns are run. It’s yet another attempt to tell people how to live their lives because of course government knows best. Because the government restricts how much individuals donate to campaigns, PAC’s were created. For all the whining about money from progressives, if we eliminated donation caps and required disclosure of donations, PAC’s and outside groups would be completely neutered. Eliminate arcane election laws limiting when candidates can spend their money and PAC’s would completely die out. Instead government wants to further restrict candidates and PAC’s. The result is the money problem faced by both campaigns today, these problems are solely the creation of government. These arcane laws, coupled with early voting have created a real problem for Romney. It will be very difficult for him to overcome these problems.