New York has struggled to emerge from a long history of political scandals. In recent years, a number of the state’s most powerful elected officials have left office after indictments or convictions, as have numerous state legislators. The public’s unhappiness over the pervasive influence of money in state politics has led to a loud call for new legislation that would reform campaign finance and ethics laws. But the state legislature has resisted.
Despite this inaction in Albany, we are optimistic that there are ways forward that do not require difficult legislation or political upheaval. For instance, New York — and other states — can use inexpensive technology to help make our campaign finance system cleaner, fairer and more transparent.