Candidates collect a threshold number of small donations to qualify (demonstrating a wide base of public support) and then receive public funding to run a competitive campaign. Further private fundraising is prohibited and they must adhere to spending limits. This would keep candidates focused on the people's interests rather than moneyed interests.
The total pool of financing for the Presidential race could be $200MM. If two candidates qualify through small donations, then they would each receive $100MM to run their campaign. If five candidates qualify, each would receive $40MM. Campaigns shouldn't be wars of attrition in which each side spends billions on ads that people see over and over again. The amounts above would be plenty to reach and inform the voters.
Without running afoul of the First Amendment, you can't restrict people from spending their own money on races. And after Citizen's United, you can't restrict people from spending money on other peoples' races either. Implementing this will just funnel more money away from candidates and toward un-registered, anonymous, committees like SuperPACs.
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