I try to stay away from discussing politics, but recently, I have been bothered by something that is not a party issue, but a congressional issue. For years, I have heard the term “leadership PAC” and had no idea what it meant. I knew it was related to campaign financing, and I assumed that it was regulated much the same. I was wrong. These leadership PACs (Political Action Committees) are, in layman’s terms, slush funds and bribery clearing houses for our congressmen and women.
Friends, supporters and lobbyists are able to donate money to these PACs, which are not regulated as normal campaign funds would be. This means the money in the PAC can be used for almost anything. This includes travel to 5 star golf resorts as long as the trip can be justified (which is not hard) as being related to the PAC. Other members of Congress have even used this money to purchase luxury suites at football stadiums (you have to hold meetings somewhere!). Many people donating to these PACS are unaware of this fact. They are blindly giving money hoping that it will help with the politicians campaigning.
Unfortunately, there is an obvious problem with allowing these political action committees. There is money involved! And, we all know things can get dicey when it comes down to money. Congressman can be bribed to try and sway a vote by lobbyists or individuals donating to these leadership PACs. They are even used to strong-arm money from donors. Donors can be told that a vote will not come up until the next session of Congress unless they donate more money to the PAC. This money can then be used to donate/bribe other congressman to help get the vote in on time.
A leadership PAC to those with common sense is a bad idea in many ways. The problem is the only way to get rid of them would be for Congress to pass a law to ban them, and we know that is not going to happen. So, if you plan on bribing a politician make sure you send the check to the leadership PAC not the normal campaign fund.