Public financing is getting attention in North Carolina.
Three major ex-politicians with ties to Nash County, two of whom are Republicans, have taken up the cause of campaign finance reform at both the state and federal levels.Former Republican N.C. Rep. Gene Arnold, former Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Valentine Jr. and former Republican lieutenant governor and U.S. Rep. Jim Gardner have united in a call to restructure the way political campaigns are funded.
Although most conservatives typically view campaign finance reform as detrimental to the election process, Gardner and Arnold joined Valentive by announcing in a letter to the media they are ready to buck the trend.
“When I first ran for Congress in 1964, it cost between $20,000 and $30,000 to run a quality congressional campaign,” said Gardner, who was the only North Carolina Republican elected lieutenant governor in the 20th century. “To have a chance at winning today, it costs in excess of millions of dollars. Things have gotten totally out of hand.”