Obviously having millions "left over" in campaign funds after re-election (or loss of election) would be a huge, huge conflict of interest when holding and/or aiming for a position in public service.
Should a limit be set as to how much any candidate can raise through fundraisers and reception of personal donations? We could set different levels of caps depending on the level of the office. Obviously a presidential hopeful would need more money than a person running for mayor, but that aside, it is a glaring issue when you have a situation where people can be bought:
If you have a system where politicians get bought, it can become harder and harder to legitimately break into the system to change it, at least from the inside. Once you have people unable to change that core flaw, it can hit a point where corruption shuts down any actual ability to stop it with laws, because only the people corrupted are in a position to make "laws" pass. This means corruption would then increase until it potentially hit the wall at which the corrupted feel comfortable stopping at, or they take the country right off the cliff because they don't realize when to stop while the gettin' is good.
Obviously this kind of corruption has already caused serious political and financial issues, but even worse situations could come to pass if we let this continue. I am not a doomsayer, but we are only mortal. We are not invincible and should not act like it. Unfortunately confidence only gets you so far before it causes you to jump off a building while thinking you can fly. Jokes aside, we have a lot of smart, good human beings trying to do the right thing by watching for, and attempting to prevent the greedy, power-hungry folks from doing harm. But there are a million variables to watch, and only so many fallible humans to organize that data, interpret it, and act on it. That means any effort made to
detract from the variables in play, which the good guys need to account for, helps them tremendously.
Attacking corruption concerning lobbyists, corporate favors/perks/jobs, cold-hard-cash-changing-hands, would definitely help the good guys. But it requires large portions of America standing up and attacking that system. We could do petitions across the nation and protest till our government acknowledges the issue. Having acknowledged it, they could not very well ignore it and say it is not a problem, and they would have no choice but to vote the bill into law, or risk looking like corrupt pieces of shit, protecting their cash-cow.
Again, I am talking about a limit, which the actual official running for office, can receive as a whole.
Not a cap on the limit which can be given TO the official by a third party, although this should be more severely limited as well.
Example: John can run for president and receive 25million total in contributions for campaigning.
He already has 19 million.
Jack wants to donate 7 million but there are two new issues: One, this would break the limit which John can receive, and two, the limit you can GIVE is set at 5 million. So he gives John 5 million,
and John now has 24 million and is now 1million away from his reception cap.
Also, should anyone who receives campaign funds be forced to forfeit those funds to the government/charity, in order to avoid intentional "gifts" not truly meant to be spent on campaign funding?
There should be one Federal POT with ALL of the campaign funding in it, which are divvied up in exact equal portions among X number of nominated candidates. Just so it allows the candidates to introduce themselves to most of the important election centers federally. And yes, there should certainly be a max amount set to it, for a fixed term of the election.