DNC Chair: Sorry Russ, Dems Are All-In On Anonymous Campaign Funds

MINNEAPOLIS — Former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) laid out a passionate case for Democrats to stay away from so-called Super PACs in his keynote address at the Netroots Nation conference Thursday night. On Friday afternoon, Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz made it clear members of her party will not be heeding his advice.

“Progressives shouldn’t be unilaterally disarming,” she told TPM.Wasserman Schultz said she “certainly understand[s]” and “congratulate[s]” Feingold on his record of campaign finance reform while a member of the Senate, but she said that his vision for a Democratic Party that steers clear of the unlimited anonymous funds allowed under the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision is unrealistic at best and downright dangerous to Democrats at worst.

“I mean, we saw what happened in the last election,” she said. “You had Democratic candidates, Democratic incumbents drowned in corporate cash that was completely opaque and completely unaccountable.”

“I think that it does an absolute disservice to the public and to the voters [to allow that drowning to continue],” she said. “They are prevented from being able to have a true picture of the differences between the two candidates that they are being asked to choose between.”