New York City Campaign Finance Board
The problem with reporting on local candidates' fund-raising before their complete filings are available is that reporters usually have to rely on numbers provided by the candidates themselves.
For Lhota, the key figure will be how much money he has left over, after paying start-up costs to launch his campaign, on top of fund-raising costs. One Republican operative not associated with any campaign said if Lhota has $500,000 left on hand after those costs, he's in great shape.
Under New York City's distinctive program of public campaign financing, candidates can raise as much money as they want, but only some of it is eligible to be matched with public money at a 6:1 ratio, and there's a spending cap.(3)
Under pressure from Michael Bloomberg and other critics, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn is delaying action on a bill she supports that would loosen campaign finance rules by allowing campaigns to coordinate with unions and corporations without that spending counting toward a candidate's cap.
Bloomberg and Bloomberg BusinessWeek sometimes seem to coordinate. [Harry Siegel]
Proposed changes to the New York City campaign finance rules allowing more coordination between unions and campaigns won't be voted on this year. [@Mnitzky]
Here's the legislation, which is supported by Council Speaker Christine Quinn. [Legistar]
"I think it's atrocious that he should make that comment," Koch said in an interview. "I thnnk Mr. Carrion is dead wrong."
The money spent on the matching funds program is a "very small part of our budget," he said. "It will no way impede the rebuilding of New York."
The New York City Campaign Finance Board said today that Mayor Michael Bloomberg "contravened the spirit of disclosure" underlying city campaign finance rules, even if he didn't violate the letter of the law, when he gave a personal donation of more than a million dollars to the New York State Independence Party but did not immediately report it as a campaign expenditure.
The city changed the law so that even if you didn't take matching funds, you still had to abide by the lower limits.
But the state hadn't changed theirs.
That's basically McDonald and Laufer's argument.
"NYC’s matching funds program is built to encourage small contributions, and text message fundraising has the potential to make it easier for campaigns to reach more small-dollar donors," Friedman said. "We are watching closely to see how the technology works in the national elections."
There's already legislation in the New York City Council to allow donations of up to $100 to city candidates. Those donations would also be eligible for matching funds.
The bill was introduced in February by Gale Brewer, chairwoman of the Committee on Government Operations.
In the most recent filings, Liu reports receiving 6.4 percent of his donations from intermediaries, an increase from the last filings, but still well behind the proportions from his potential mayoral opponents.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer reported getting 45 and 51 percent of their donations, respectively, from intermediaries, after having reported over 40 percent last time.
Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, who raised more money than any candidate in this six-month filing period, reported about 21 percent of his donations from intermediaries.
Should unions be allowed to spend money communicating to their own members and not have it count as an independent expenditure during next year's mayor's race?
Two leading candidates say no. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Public Advocate Bill de Blasio agree on this point and asked the New York City Campaign Finance Board to adjust their rules accordingly, reported Sally Goldenberg.
The push by Quinn and de Blasio helps underscore the huge role unions could, potentially, play in city politics in the post-Bloomberg era, which, resembles politics in the pre-Bloomberg era.
The problem with John Liu's campaign finances, at its most basic, is that he claims to have raised lots of money from lots of individual donors with relatively little help from intermediaries.
The intermediaries, or bundlers, are the people who help bring donations into a campaign but aren't officially working as fund-raisers. In plain language: They are extra-important money people, and therefore the very people who need to be identified if the city's campaign-finance disclosure requirements are to have any deterring effect whatsoever on favor-trading by the public officials who get elected with their help.
In 2009, she raised $168,033 from private contributions and matching funds from the New York City Campaign Finance Board, but spent $178,668. Among her biggest expenses were $19,459.25 to the Parkside Group for polling and literature, $12,000 to the Victory Consulting Group for campaign consulting and polling,