Former president Jimmy Carter talks about 2016 presidential election; Says US politics corrupted by legal bribery
Feb 05, 2016 07:29 AM EST
On Wednesday, former US President Jimmy Carter shared his thoughts about the 2016 presidential election and said that the US politics has been corrupted by hundreds of millions of dollars of campaign financing. He also said that there were many changes that occurred after he left the White House, but the biggest difference is in campaign finance which amounts to legal bribery.
In an interview with John Humphrys, Carter said that he himself, a peanut farmer, would not have the power and resources to run for the office of the president in the current political system. He said that he didn't have money and pointed out the some candidates like Donald Trump can put in his own money, but others have to be able to raise at least $100 million just to get Republican or Democratic vote.
The Guardian reported that the former president described the landmark 2010 Citizens United court decision, which equated campaign financing with freedom of speech, as an 'erroneous ruling.' The domination of money in US politics represented the biggest change since he was seated as the president back in 1976.
He also told BBC that the erroneous ruling of the Supreme Court, where millionaires and billionaires, can put in an unlimited amount of money, gave legal bribery the chance to prevail. He added that US politics depends on these massive infusions of money from very rich individuals in order to have money to run for president.
"As the rich people finance the campaigns, when candidates get in office they do what the rich people want," Carter added. "And that's to let the rich people get richer and richer and the middle class gets left out."
The Federal Election Commission posted on their website that all candidates already have raised about $431 million total for this election so far. It was also listed that $193 million came from Democrats and $238 million from Republicans.
Jimmy Carter described the system of the US government in August as an oligarchy with unlimited political bribery. Carter has been known to criticize campaign finance since the court decided to uphold the Citizens United in 2012, which he cited as the most stupid decision the Supreme Court ever made.