To: The Connecticut House of Representatives

Protect Connecticut's Public Financing Reforms

Connecticut has had state-wide public financing since 2008 in the form of its Citizens Election Program. Now, facing budget cuts, the state is poised to undo this signature accomplishment. If these plans proceed, it will result in wealthy donors, once again, dominating the state’s elections.

Why is this important?

Connecticut’s Citizens Election Program has increased participation, diversified the donor pool, helped more candidates of color run for office, and led to policy outcomes more responsive to the needs of the general public than the elite donor class.

In bipartisan interviews with public officials, Demos has shown the state’s public financing has helped Connecticut—in policy, representation, and process. Once candidates were no longer exclusively dependent on wealthy donors and businesses, the influence of lobbyists decreased, and elected representatives became more responsive to the public will and passed popular programs such as guaranteeing paid sick leave to workers and raising the minimum wage.

And participation in the Citizens’ Election program is extremely high. The 2012, 77 percent of elected legislators participated in the voluntary program and all current statewide offices are held by public financing participants.

That’s why this really makes no sense. Let the Connecticut legislature know this is unacceptable.