Political campaigns in Lebanon are going to the highest bidder, The New York Times reported Thursday. Politicians are paying off voters to gain office.
A parallel example can be shown right here in the U.S. Take this sentence from the Times’ story as a starting point:
“…Mostly the political machines work through local patriarchs known as ‘electoral keys,’ who can deliver the votes of an entire clan in exchange for money or services — scholarships, a hospital, repaved roads and so on.”
All you have to do is switch a few words — and roles — to make it relevant here.
“…Mostly the political machines work through local leaders known as ‘union bosses,’ who can deliver the votes of an entire group in exchange for money or services — a higher minimum wage, a bailout, and so on.”
Lebanon is extreme, but the U.S. showed similar tendencies with the dismissal of the public financing in the 2008 presidential election that turned it into another race for cash.
This is an loose example, the Tank admits, but a look in the mirror is necessary here. A key counterargument to my claim is that Barack Obama garnered support from a bunch of small donations from the middle class, but it was the big ticket endorsements of the AFL-CIO labor union and other left-leaning executives that propelled him to the Oval Office.