Campaign Finance reform
Citizens Union has long advocated for campaign finance reforms and against the undue influence of money on campaigns, candidates and government officials. The public perception that elected officials in New York State are beholden to special interests has created a lack of faith in our system of representative government and a related decrease in voter turnout and participation in our political process.
New York State has some of the most lax campaign finance laws in the nation, including contribution limits that far exceed those even for President. With the cost of running for office increasing each election cycle, money has become a determinative factor in elections—and candidates have come to rely on donors seeking influence to help get them elected.
To address these concerns, Citizens Union supports enactment of a public matching program similar to New York City’s at the state level, and believes that this reform must be paired with drastic changes in state statutes and regulations to reduce contribution limits; strengthen oversight and tighten enforcement; restrict, if not ban, soft money contributions; and require greater disclosure and reporting of campaign contributions and contributors, campaign expenditures, and independent expenditures.
- February 18, 2014 - Good Government Coalition Presses Cuomo to Keep Bold Promise of Campaign Finance Reform in State Budget
- May 6, 2013 - CU Report - Hidden from View: The Undisclosed Campaign Activities of Political Clubs in NYS
- May 6, 2013 - CU News Release on "Hidden from View"
- May 6, 2013 - Testimony to Senate Elections Committee in Support of NYC Public Matching System and Need for Comprehensive Reform
- May 1, 2013 - Testimony to the Senate Independent Democratic Conference on Campaign Finance Reform
- November 9, 2012 - CU Report - Fair Elections for NYS: How Public Matching Creates Greater Voter Choice and Competition
- November 9, 2012 - New Release on CU Report, Fair Elections for NYS
- November 7, 2012 - Complaint Letter to Attorney General Schneiderman Re: Common Sense Principles Failure to Report Spending
- April 18, 2012 - Citizens Union Announces Participation in Fair Elections Campaign
- February 3, 2012 - Citizens Union joins 117 Organizations, supporting Governor Cuomo's Campaign Finance Reform Efforts
- January 4, 2012 - CU Comments Governor Cuomo for Support of Campaign Finance Reform in State of the State Address
- January 3, 2011 - Good Government Groups Report on 2010 Capital Investments
- June 8, 2009 - CU Memo of Support for S.4549-A Lowering Campaign Contribution Limits for Statewide Office
- June 3, 2009 - Citizens Union Testimony to the Senate Standing Committee on Elections on Draft Campaign Finance Legislation
- April 2009 - Good Government Groups Push for State Campaign Finance and Ethics Reform in Post-Budget Session
- February 2009 - Good Government Groups Release Report on Sources of Campaign Contributions which Bolsters the Need for Campaign Finance Reform
- February 2009 - Good Government Groups Issue Press Release on Report on Sources of Campaign Contributions
- May 2008 -- Issue Brief and Position Statement on State Campaign Finance Reform with Public Matching Funds
- May 8, 2008 -- Statement Reaffirming Support For A New York State Campaign Finance Public Matching Fund Program
- July 19, 2007 -- Statement on Campaign Finance Reform Agreement
- May 9, 2007 -- Statement Calling Upon Elected Officials to Publicly Disclose Their Positions and Enact Campaign Finance Reform