The above url references a speech by Republican presidential candidate Buddy Roemer delivered August 15, 2011 at the National Press Club in DC. This video is hosted at c-span and mirrored at the above link with a transcript in text.
First some background (from Reomer's main campaign website):
The corrupting influences that special interests have over our political system have never been stronger. Politicians in Washington, D.C. are completely beholden to these special interest groups to fund their political campaigns. It is time that someone stands-up against the power of the big checks, the bundled checks and the corporate checks.
This campaign is about challenging the institutionally corrupt forces that are opposing real reform. I want to empower the average citizens on Main Street, not the well-paid lobbyists from Wall Street. To do so, I will need the support of some of the 99% of Americans who have never donated to a candidate for elected office.
I am committed to fighting these corrupt special interests and I am willing to take the tough, bold steps necessary to do so. That is why I have refused to accept PAC money and limited individual campaign donations to a maximum of $100. We need a President who is free to lead.
So there you have it; the most invisible candidate in the primary. In particular, Roemer's stance on campaign financing has nearly posited his entire endeavour in the realm of an 'empty or symbolic' gesture. Roemer chooses not to accept contributions over $100 from individuals and (correct me if mistaken), $2500 from PACs (which he would abolish, but concedes $2500 cap for the others).
Allow me to reference a few key points from the transcripts.
First, the challenge;
I challenge my fellow republican candidates to stand with the people, the plain people, against the undue influence of the special interests and adopt these 6 rules of engagement;
1. Full disclosure, regardless of size of the contribution.
2. Real time reporting, not quarterly. I recommend a 48 hour cycle beginning when the contribution is received.
3. A prohibition against a “registered” lobbyist participating in a fundraiser.
4. Criminal penalties for violations of the rules. This must have “bite”.
5. Eliminate “super” PACS entirely. Full disclosure and 48 hour reporting at a minimum.
6. Either eliminate PACS altogether or reduce their limit to be no more than the $2,500 individual limit.
What does this mean? In Roemer's words;
Here is my position: in a time of crises, in a time of peril, in a time of deep uncertainty, a president must be free to lead a resurgent nation. If he must continually compromise with the special interests who own the office, bold action will never come.
So i ask my republican colleagues to limit contributions to the individual allowed amount of $2500. Accept no PAC money, no SUPERPACS money, no lobbyists working as fundraisers, no bundlers as ambassadors to be.
Let Obama raise a billion dollars from the special interests. Let him 'choose' to be weighted down with the demands of the special interests.
We will win with fewer dollars but with greater support from the American people, because we will show them that we are truly free to lead.
If the other republicans 'did' accept his challenge(not they have any intentions of doing so), how would the major media outlets respond? Every debate so far has all the charm of a sporting event with the only thing missing the signs alongside the bleachers; the same money that produces the debates in many cases, comes from the same corps that contribute. Clearly this would not work. If a major venue or network decides to back a debate, they need to know they will be getting something out of the deal.
What if any thoughts do we have on this?