New Poll: Broad Support for Small-Donor Driven Solutions to Money in Politics

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Seventy-two percent of Americans – a broad, bipartisan majority – support small-donor solutions to overhaul America’s campaign-finance system, according to new polling released recently by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner for Democracy Corps and Every Voice.

“Voters from across the political spectrum agree that America has a money-in-politics problem and small-donor driven reforms are the answer,” said David Donnelly, Every Voice president and chief executive officer. “Americans — and particularly millennials — understand that when our presidential elections are funded by a small set of unrepresentative, elite donors, the voices of everyday people are not heard. Small-donor reform is good policy and good politics, and candidates should rally Americans to this cause.”

Here are some key findings from the poll: 

  • There is broad, bipartisan support for small-donor solutions. Seventy-two percent of Americans (including majorities of Democrats, Republicans and Independents) favor a plan to address the role of money in politics with a small-donor public financing system combined with disclosure for all political spending by outside groups and strictly enforced election laws.
  • Voters are concerned about the out-sized influence of a small, unrepresentative donor class. When asked to select their top concerns about money in politics from a list, voters were most concerned that big donors aren’t like regular people. Thirty-nine percent of respondents were concerned that donors are “overwhelmingly white, rich, older and male, and have made their money in finance, oil and coal in a nation that is increasingly younger, more diverse, and where women are a majority.”
  • Voters are concerned about Super PACS. Poll respondents also expressed concern over the fact that many presidential super PACs are raising more than their campaign counterparts and that just 158 families contributed nearly half of all the money raised for presidential candidates so far this cycle. 

Greenberg Quinlan Rosner conducted a national survey of 900 likely 2016 voters in December. Every Voice noted on its website that unless otherwise noted, the margin of error for the full sample is +/-3.26 percent at 95 percent confidence.

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