DNC punts on measure to reduce role of corporate PAC money

DNC punts on measure to reduce role of corporate PAC money
© Greg Nash

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has punted on a resolution that would have created a task force to reduce the role of corporate PACs in party fundraising.

At a general meeting of DNC members in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, party officials said that they would instead refer the matter to the party's Platform Committee in 2020, giving the Democratic National Convention final say on the measure next year.

The measure referred by members would have required DNC Chairman Tom PerezThomas Edward PerezClinton’s top five vice presidential picks Government social programs: Triumph of hope over evidence Labor’s 'wasteful spending and mismanagement” at Workers’ Comp MORE to establish a task force to study corporate PAC money in party fundraising within 60 days of the DNC’s winter meeting this week.

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While the resolution had the backing of top DNC officials, including Perez, the issue of corporate money in party fundraising has been a point of contention among Democrats for some time.

Former President Obama introduced a ban on corporate PAC money as a candidate in 2008. The DNC removed that ban in 2016 amid a contentious Democratic primary that brought the issue of special interests and corporate campaign contributions front and center.

Some members have called for a complete ban on corporate PAC money in Democratic politics. But other Democrats say that banning such contributions would essentially tie the party’s hands in its push to defeat President TrumpDonald John TrumpNASA exec leading moon mission quits weeks after appointment The Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Frustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' MORE in 2020.

A growing number of Democratic candidates up and down the ballot have rejected corporate PAC contributions to their campaigns in recent years.

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenThe Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan On The Money: Senate passes disaster aid bill after deal with Trump | Trump to offer B aid package for farmers | House votes to boost retirement savings | Study says new tariffs to double costs for consumers Overnight Energy: Democrats ask if EPA chief misled on vehicle emissions | Dem senators want NBC debate focused on climate change | 2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan MORE (D-Mass.), who’s seeking the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, said last month that she would not take campaign money from corporate PACs and urged her Democratic challengers to do the same.

Since then, several presidential hopefuls, including former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro and Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardCNN's O'Rourke town hall finishes behind Fox News, MSNBC Progressive Democrat says Trump victory shed light on divide between Silicon Valley, rural US Anita Hill: Female 2020 Democrats 'not being taken seriously' MORE (D-Hawaii), have pledged to reject money from such groups.