Out-of-control Question 7 campaign spending a function of excessive government

October 16, 2012

Sen. Brian Frosh's comment that the $40 million raised so far by gambling interests in Maryland for the casino referendum constitutes "wretched excess" is incredibly naive ("Record $40 million raised for and against gambling referendum," Oct. 13). The amount of spending merely underlines that funding for all political campaigns will continue to escalate commensurate with the expansion and intrusion of the government at the federal and state level, as will corruption and crony capitalism, I might add. It is the natural state of affairs, and it is a bipartisan phenomenon.

The more that government decides to give away or take away through taxes, laws or regulations, the more that people will fight for or against them, depending on whose ox is being gored, and the more they will spend, understandably, on behalf of their interests. For example, if government proposes to impose a special tax on the tech industry or beverages, those industries will fight them. So those so-called good government types who would try to limit campaign contributions fail to acknowledge the root cause of the huge levels of political contributions.

I would add that in the case of the casino referendum, the general public did not advocate for expanded gambling in Maryland; the gambling interests, the governor, certain local governments, Democratic members of the legislature, and certain unions pushed for the expansion.

David F. Tufaro, Baltimore

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