November 3, 2010

Money Doesn’t Buy Elections

No matter what your political views, we learned some interesting lessons Monday night.

One of the most important takeaways for me came from the California Gubernatorial election where former President and CEO of eBay, Republican Meg Whitman, spent a record $170 million on the race, which she lost to Democratic challenger Jerry Brown.

Money can't buy elections anymore. Whoever has the most gold can make the most ads. But, they're becoming a progressively decaying factor. Because P.R. spreads faster than billboards. Social media spreads faster than signage. Actions spread faster than ads.

So shut up with your "money will buy elections". It's true, but not based on ad budgets. People vote for the person that's going to be the best for their situation. If they are employed in an industry propped by subsidies, they're going to vote for the candidate who supports them.

That's what we should be focused on getting rid of. Not campaign budget and donor regulations.

More on Meg Whitman and the idea of "running a state like a business" tomorrow.