Welcome to the Money in Politics Podcast, hosted by Andrew Blumenfeld! Join us for interesting conversations and takes on one of the most significant and misunderstood elements of our political system: money. You will hear from a variety of perspectives-- such as professional fundraisers, major donors, compliance experts, candidates and their campaigns, and the leaders of some of the most influential organizations in Democratic politics. If you work in or around politics- or just care about the health of our democracy!- this podcast is for you. Do you have a question about the podcast or want to recommend a topic for future episodes? Shoot us an email at email@example.com
Draining the Swamp, with the Directors of HBO's 'The Swamp'
Welcome to season two of the Money in Politics podcast, and what better way to begin this new season than by diving directly into the deep-end of the swamp?! We're joined today by Daniel DiMauro and Morgan Pehme, the directors of a new HBO documentary, The Swamp, which provides a behind-the-scenes look at congress through the experiences of Representatives Matt Gaetz, Thomas Massie, and Ken Buck, as they, in each their own way, combat the financial interests that play such a big role in congress. DiMauro and Pehme share what they learned from a year of following around these three congressmen to make this film.
Perspectives from a Professional Fundraiser
The 2020 election cycle has been a roller coaster for professional fundraisers as they have adapted to a global pandemic, an unprecedented presidential election, and new waves of racial justice activism throughout the country. Mather Martin is an experienced political and non-profit fundraiser who currently works with Senator Cory Booker but has also worked with Senator and Vice Presidential nominee Kamala Harris, as well as philanthropist and mega-donor Sean Parker. Mather joins the Money in Politics podcast to discuss new trends in the fundraising sector.
Black Political Power & Fundraising
Black Americans are underrepresented at almost every level of elected office, from the state legislature to the United States Senate. Quentin Jones is the Founder and President of The Collective, a PAC that seeks to attain political equity for Black Americans by educating voters and donors, and by equipping candidates with the resources they need to win. To this end, The Collective has raised and bundled over $10,000,000 and amassed a subscriber network in the hundreds of thousands. Quentin joins the Money in Politics podcast to share how The Collective approaches its support of candidates and what must change about the current role of money in politics to ensure an expansion of black political representation.
Misusing Campaign Funds and Taxpayer Dollars
It seems that all too often, we find ourselves reading another scandal about the ethical lapses of our elected representatives, and this past month was no different. Chris Marquette, a reporter for CQ Roll Call, recently reported that Rep. Sanford Bishop Jr. may have used thousands of dollars in taxpayer dollars and campaign funds for personal expenses on gas fill-ups for him and his family, greens fees at country clubs, luxurious trips, school tuition, and an extravagant Christmas party. Chris joins the Money in Politics podcast to talk about how this happened and the accountability mechanisms that exist to help protect against bad behavior.
A Loophole: Foreign Money in Politics
Issue One, a crosspartisan organization that brings together Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, recently published a report detailing a concerning loophole that can allow for anonymous money to flood our electoral process. Michael Beckel is the Research Director at Issue One and is the author of that report, "Mystery Money." He joins the Money in Politics Podcast to share more about what he found when it comes to potential foreign influence in our elections.
Fundraising for Latino Candidates
If you've listened to the podcast before, you'll know that we like to discuss how people of all identities experience the process of political fundraising. After all, money can ultimately determine who is considered a "credible" candidate. There are several organizations that are working to even the money-playing field for candidates of all backgrounds. Daniela Fernandez is the Finance Director of the Latino Victory Fund, a progressive organization looking to grow Latino political power by increasing Latino representation among elected officials and building a base of Latino donors. She joins the Money in Politics podcast to discuss the work of the Latino Victory Fund and the experiences of Latino candidates.