WATCHDOG GROUP BLASTS DEAN SCONTRAS FOR COMMENTS ON CLEAN ELECTIONS

Washington, D.C.--- Campaign Money Watch, a project of the nonpartisan Public Campaign Action Fund, blasted Maine Congressional candidate Dean Scontras today for his remarks deriding Maine’s successful Clean Elections system as “bad for business.”

“When Dean Scontras claims Maine’s Clean Elections program is ‘bad for business,’ he’s really saying that he wants to give corporations free rein to buy and sell access and influence in Washington, D.C. as if our democracy is a commodity to be sold to the highest bidder,” said David Donnelly, director of Campaign Money Watch. “That’s 100 percent wrong. Clean Elections is a highly successful program used by Democrats, Republicans, and other candidates, and is widely supported by Maine voters.

“Chellie Pingree knows that Congress should follow Maine’s lead and pass a similar piece of legislation called the Fair Elections Now Act. Elections should be in the hands of voters, not special interests,” said Donnelly, who also served as campaign manager for the ballot initiative that led to Maine’s successful Clean Elections law. “In 1996 when I managed the initiative campaign for Clean Elections, Maine voters made it clear they wanted elections of, by, and for the people. And that’s as true today as it was back then, and as true in Washington as it is in Augusta.”

During a debate yesterday on WGAN radio, Scontras claimed that Maine isn’t a business friendly state and that Congress shouldn’t take Clean Elections to “the national level.” Rep. Pingree has championed the Fair Elections Now Act, legislation modeled on the goals of Maine’s Clean Elections law, in Congress. A bipartisan group of 165 U.S. House members have also co-sponsored the legislation.

“Maine residents know that Congresswoman Pingree stands with them,” said Donnelly. “Dean Scontras stands squarely outside the mainstream.”

###

Campaign Money Watch works to hold politicians who are against comprehensive campaign finance reform accountable for where they get their political donations. Learn more at www.campaignmoneywatch.com.