Hyperpartisan Campaign Finance

39 Pages Posted: 10 Aug 2021

Date Written: July 13, 2021


Hyperpartisanship dominates modern American politics and government, but today’s politics are strikingly different from the preceding period of American history, a Cold War Era when bipartisanship and ideological moderation predominated. Hyperpartisanship was not the salient dynamic in American politics when campaign finance law began, and as a result, campaign finance law developed under strikingly different assumptions about American politics than the current prevailing circumstances. Today’s campaign finance law, inherited from this preceding era, is thus mismatched to the campaign finance of today. Campaign finance law focuses on individual candidates as the central actors in fundraising and misses the role of parties in organizing the campaign finance landscape. It therefore both systematically underestimates the risk that parties pose in collectivizing the potential for campaign finance corruption and overestimates the First Amendment values promoted by modern campaign finance when the parties today focus so heavily on mobilizing their base and preaching to the choir.

Keywords: parties, partisanship, hyperpartisanship, campaign finance, Cold War

Suggested Citation

Kang, Michael S., Hyperpartisan Campaign Finance (July 13, 2021). Emory Law Journal, Vol. 70, 2021, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3885994

Michael S. Kang (Contact Author)

Northwestern Pritzker School of Law ( email )

750 N. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

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