Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Economics of being a MoveOn Member

Scoop had a piece that reflected my thoughts about MoveOn running a "real" anti-war candidate against Max in the Democratic primary. It kind of mirrored a post by Missoulaopolis where she was rather amazed that MoveOn would do such a thing.

This got me to thinking. There is a cap of $2,300 per person per election that can be contributed in a federal election. So, let's take a typical MoveOn couple in Montana and see what happens to them. Using a rough estimate of $40,000 for the household income, (based on the idea that MoveOn members tend to be better educated and wealthier than the average blue collar Democrat), the two adults of the presumed household could each contribute the $2,300 to the challenger of Max, for a total of $4,600. Then, after the challenger loses, they could repeat the $4,600 contribution in the general election to Max, for a total contribution in the Montana Senate race of $9,200, or nearly 25% of their gross income for one election.

The reason that this is interesting to me, is not that someone would be so committed to the idea of supporting their cause that they would spend one fourth of their gross income on a candidate, rather, there is a limit in the amount that they could practically donate, and without a challenger against Max, they would concentrate their giving to Max.

However, since Max is an incumbent, and according to some on the Left, he is soliciting bribes, er I mean donations from lobbyists, it seems highly unlikely that the MoveOn couple will have any real effect in the primary, and Max will be able to move solidly to the center, like he usually does. The net result is that the MoveOn couple will be out their contributions, Max will survive the primary and again run as a Demopublican like he always has.

I tell you, Dave is looking better and better every day. (In a figurative sense anyway)

Dave in 08!

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