Congressman Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa) recently unveiled his “Holding Congress Accountable” legislative package. The package includes a set of bills the former college professor authored or helped introduced to restore the public’s faith in their government.
“Being a member of Congress means putting people first and working for the things that are important to the people we were chosen to represent, not special interests. The American people deserve better. It’s time for Congress to show it is serious about making good choices for the country. It’s time Congress is held accountable and does what’s right so the American people can have trust in the work that their government is doing,” Loebsack said in avideo announcing the package.
Included in it is Rep. John Sarbanes’ (D-Maryland) Government By the People Act (HR 20), which currently has 157 cosponsors in the House. The bill would increase political participation, amplify the voice of everyday Americans, and fight back against big money special interests in politics.
Here’s how the Government By the People Act would work:
- The bill would provide Americans with a $25 refundable tax credit to encourage small dollar contributions to candidates for Congress. In addition, it would establish a Freedom from Influence Fund to multiply the impact of these small donors who give to candidates ($150 or less).
- Everyday Americans would have their contributions of $1 to $150 to participating candidates matched by 6-1, turning a $50 contribution into a $350 contribution.
- Lastly, the bill would decrease the power of Super PACs and dark money and empower everyday Americans. Candidates who raised at least $50,000 in the last 60 days of the election would be eligible for more resources to overcome big money.
In our recent poll with Democracy Corps, 66% of respondents said they would support a system like the one proposed in the Government By The People Act to lift the voice of everyday Americans.