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Tax-Financed Campaigns: A Speech-Chilling, Costly, and Failed Policy

January 1, 2018  •  By IFS Staff  •    •  

Tax-financed campaigns are government-operated programs that seek to replace or supplement private, voluntary campaign contributions with government grants of taxpayer dollars to candidates who meet certain requirements. These programs, often tagged with euphemistic names such as “democracy dollars” or “clean elections,” take many forms. Some provide tax dollars to candidates based on the donations they’ve received while other programs provide…

Straw donor scams steal tax dollars: Public matching fund programs are ripe for rip offs

September 5, 2023   •  By Tiffany Donnelly   •  ,

Passed during a devastating pandemic and plummeting tax revenue, New York’s new budget law gives tens of millions of tax dollars to political campaigns.

Matching funds tempt corrupt pols & cost plenty

February 14, 2023   •  By Tiffany Donnelly   •  ,

But taxpayers aren’t so lucky. They’re still on the hook for funding the money pit encouraging these corrupt politicians, New York City’s matching funds ...

Brian Benjamin case shows that small-donor matching systems incentivize fraud

June 20, 2022   •  By Tiffany Donnelly   •  ,

The U.S. Department of Justice claims ex-Lt. Gov. Brian Benjamin went to criminal lengths to get his hands on a big pot of “matching” ...

President Biden Asks Congress to Censor Political Speech in First State of the Union Address

March 9, 2022   •  By Nathan Maxwell   •  , , , , , ,

The State of the Union address is the president’s yearly opportunity to discuss solutions to the nation’s toughest problems before Congress. In President Joe ...

This “Free Speech Week,” Senate Dems Vote for Political Speech Restrictions

October 21, 2021   •  By Nathan Maxwell   •  , , , , ,

Some federal lawmakers have stopped at nothing this year to advance their bundle of political speech restrictions, now as S. 2747, the so-called “Freedom ...

The First Amendment Is Lucky to Have Mitch McConnell

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell hammered the first nail into the coffin of the draconian S. 1 legislation on Wednesday, announcing that the Democrats’ 800-plus-page rewrite of ...

Senators embarrass themselves defending S.1 bill’s assault on free speech

How do you defend a bill that would subsidize politicians' campaigns, expose people to harassment for their beliefs, and impose a partisan takeover of ...

Democrats’ H.R. 1 Election Takeover Would Also Control What Americans And Politicians Say

May 4, 2021   •  By Tiffany Donnelly   •  ,

Democrats often rail against the dangers of “hate speech” and “extremist content,” yet their radical election overhaul bill, H.R. 1, would use taxpayer funds ...

Looking Ahead: Major Free Speech Developments to Expect Throughout Remainder of 2021

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April 22, 2021   •  By Alex Baiocco   •  , , , , , , ,

Last year, the Institute for Free Speech pointed to several trends likely to impact Americans’ political speech rights. Unfortunately, efforts to restrict speech, press, ...

Fact Check: Would H.R. 1 and S. 1 Give Taxpayer Money to Politicians? Yes.

April 5, 2021   •  By Tiffany Donnelly   •  ,

It’s undisputed that H.R. 1 and S. 1 would take public money and give it to politicians’ campaigns. However, supporters of the scheme claim ...

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