The Kansas City Star today gets after Congress to fix the presidential public financing system. Decrying the attitude of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) who wants to junk public financing for good, this editorial suggests that neglect has caused a breakdown in the system, but that public financing is still sorely needed to reduce corruption and restore accountability in elections.
The paper urges Democratic leaders to make campaign finance reform a priority in the 110th Congress. Beyond the initial ethics reforms of the "first 100 hours" agenda in the House, Congressmen Tierney (D-MA) and Grijalva (D-AZ) plan to bring re-introduce their Clean Elections public financing bill and Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL) has announced plans to introduce a full public financing bill in the Senate shortly. Both of these bills will deal with the financing of congressional races, but will no doubt spur debate over a full public financing system for presidential races as well.