Thursday, August 12, 2004

Taxpayers Foot Bill for Political Partying

and Radley Balko says it's not right. And he's right! U.S. taxpayers give $15 million apiece to Democrats and Republicans for their conventions. Taxpayers in host cities and host states pay even more. This doesn't include the $50 million that each party gets for convention security in a post-9/11 world.

"After four years of spending taxpayer dollars at rates unseen in U.S. history, after failing to carry out the single most important responsibility of government — to protect American citizens from those who want to harm us — America's two major political organizations now get to throw themselves grand galas, where party leaders bloviate on national television about the earnest, hard-working taxpayer, then party in corporate suites where they nosh on the likes of 'maple bourbon glazed turkey and roasted duck, and Forest Glen chardonnay.' And you and I pay for it."

Radko doesn't buy the major parties' claim that we're paying for the "privilege of democracy," since the primary election system — also paid for by taxpayers — basically selects nominees months earlier.

Yet Democrats claim to be for the "common people" and Republicans feign concern about our tax burdens - while both put the squeeze on us taxpayers. Not long ago I ranted about how this misuse of tax dollars was neither a constitutional duty or responsibility of the federal government. Ending this party freebie would force the donkeys and elephants to create conventions that actually appeal to Americans, and not bore us to death.


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