Statement: Meredith McGehee on the final presidential debate

Following tonight’s presidential debate, Meredith McGehee, Issue One’s chief of policy, programs and strategy issued the following statement: 

Should Hillary Clinton become president, it is imperative for her to commit to create a “Chinese Wall” between the government and the Clinton Foundation which she failed to do as Secretary of State. Likewise, she should continue the restrictions on lobbyists’ access to elected officials adopted by the Obama Administration. 

Clinton should also lead the charge to place new restrictions on bundling of campaign contributions by lobbyists, to reduce the transactional giving that creates conflicts of interests, and to support bipartisan legislation to prevent foreign money from influencing the outcome of our elections. 

Hillary Clinton also reiterated tonight one of the pillars of her money in politics platform – supporting a new Supreme Court jurisprudence to address our patchwork of ineffective campaign finance regulations, from Citizens United and earlier decisions. 

More important, however, is that Congress and our next president do not have to wait for the Supreme Court. Congress can pass a range of measures to address the four hours a day members spend raising money and the conflicts of interest created by our current campaign finance system. Congress can pass laws to make the millions of dollars in “dark money” wending its way through our elections more transparent and to end the dysfunction in the Federal Election Commission. 

Meanwhile, Donald Trump has yet to explain his policy proposals to reduce corruption and influence-peddling in Washington other than the imposition of term limits and new revolving door restrictions. He remains silent on solutions to address the role of money in our politics. This is particularly noteworthy in light of the fact that key advisers to candidate Trump include the head of the Citizens United organization and a former FEC Commissioner, both of whom have supported efforts to gut limitations on campaign contributions. 

At the end of the day, it is important that the American people have faith in the legitimacy of the outcome of our elections. This is a key component of self-government as envisioned by our Founders.