Democrats have spent decades railing against the amount of anonymous funding, or “dark money,” poured into elections and politics each year, but they don’t seem to have much of an opinion on the matter when that money benefits them or one of their own.
According to Newsmax, the perfect example of how influential dark money can be on an election-level is evidenced by former Vice President Joe Biden’s — media-declared — victory in the 2020 presidential election, as he pulled in a whopping $132 million in anonymous funding for the 2020 election cycle.
Biden took in so much dark money that he topped the list of dark money recipients — despite months of posturing against shadowy donors.
“The analysis defined dark money as donations and other spending by nonprofits that don’t disclose sources, and money from limited liability corporations functioning as shell corporations,” the Newsmax report explained.
As a Center for Responsive Politics for CNN analysis indicated, Democrats were the prime recipients of mountains of dark money, hauling in roughly $320 million, which was reportedly more than double that Republicans took in for the 2020 election.
Not surprisingly, Biden’s advisers didn’t care to comment on the matter, but presumably in an effort to save face, said that Biden is bent on proposing “sweeping changes” to address the dark money issue once he’s in office — and after he’s already taken in the most dark money of any candidate in 2020.
Fred Wertheimer, who runs the watchdog group Democracy 21, said that the dark money issue and campaign finance is always a hot topic, but implied that both parties don’t seem to want to take the actions necessary to put a stop to it.
“This is a rotten system, but as long as it exists, both parties are going to use it,” Wertheimer said.
According to 850WFTL, the 2016 election cycle saw much less dark money thrown at candidates than in 2020, with only $66.8 million. However, a report from the Center for Responsive Politics at the time indicated that Republicans benefited then with more than twice the amount spent on their party as opposed to Democrats.
In other words, dark money has been and remains still a massive problem. Until someone brave enough in Congress attempts to reduce its impact, the problem will likely exponentially grow in the future.