Campaign finance

Updated at 7:15 p.m. ET

Two Florida-based businessmen who helped President Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani in his efforts to dig up dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden in Ukraine have been arrested and charged with campaign finance violations in a separate matter.

Buffalo State College

State leaders have tapped 10 people, including one Buffalonian, for a task force that will create the rules governing the state's new $100 million public campaign finance system.

A group that opposes big money in politics has issued a report showing that a handful of billionaires are contributing heavily to Republican congressional campaigns in New York.


WBFO News File Photo

Campaign finance, legislative positions, and public trust in government are likely to be among the topics Governor Andrew Cuomo will bring up in his upcoming State of the State address.

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With just over a week left in the legislative session, Governor Cuomo released his bill to extend public financing of political campaigns to statewide races.  But he still faces resistance from some factions in the legislature.

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State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says the state's campaign finance system needs to be completely replaced, including ending pensions for state officials who are convicted for corruption.

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Ralph Nader is pushing for a constitutional amendment to allow government regulation of campaign spending.

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Governor Cuomo says he’s starting  a new effort to push campaign finance reform in New York’s elections.

Governor Cuomo pledged during his election campaign that he would work toward reforming the state’s campaign finance system, which contains loopholes that permit nearly unlimited amounts of money to be given to candidates.   The governor listed public financing of campaigns as a goal in his State of the State message in January, but then failed to actively pursue the topic. The governor says there was a reason.

WBFO News file photo

The State Assembly has introduced a bill to permit for the first time in New York voluntary public financing of some election campaigns. 

The Assembly bill would offer an optional public financing system for campaigns for state legislative and statewide offices, giving candidates six dollars for every one dollar in contributions. It would be financed, in part, through a $5 check off option on state income taxes.  

Bill Mahoney, with the New York Public Interest Research Group, says it’s a “good first step”.