Good news, everybody: the GOP isn’t the only national political party taking the money that you thought would help express your political views in Washington and using it to buy caviar strap-ons. Yesterday, the Washington Post revealed that “both the national Democratic and Republican committees spend about two-thirds of the money they take in on the care and comfort of committee staffs and on efforts to raise more funds, with lavish spending on limousines, expensive hotels, meals and tips.” Props to Jacek “Monster In the Closet” Pruski for the link. Those of you who have worked in nonprofits know that the appropriate level of operating costs for a charitable organization is generally agreed to be about 20% of income. During the fundraising cycle that ended in February, the DNC took in about $100 million, and spent $60 million on travel, catering, hotels, entertainment, staff salaries and “office supplies”—a line that, in the RNC’s annual report to the Federal Election Commission, included liquor, jelly beans, and a $900 tab at the Little Door restaurant in Beverly Hills. First of all, if you’ve ever eaten at the Little Door, you know the manilla file folders are incredible. Second of all, the RNC took in $109 million last fundraising cycle, and spent $74 million of it. Where did all that money go?
We know from the Post article that $15,000 went to Cowboys tickets, which is the kind of expenditure that makes sense in today’s political environment. Anyone will tell you that Republicans A) come from Texas and B) love football, just as Democrats love mozzarella sticks and Sierra Madre Pale Ale—which explains how the DNC managed to spend four thousand dollars at Bullfeathers. It takes money to make money, after all, and sometimes that money has to come in the form of $4,266 worth of tickets on StubHub, which you later list in your FEC report as “lodging.”
Back in 2004, in a fit of what can only now be described as suicidal optimism, I gave the Democratic National Committee $100 to spend on trying to elect John Kerry. It’s now safe to assume that, in addition to apparently allowing Mr. Kerry to melt, the DNC did not put my entire hundred dollars into the Poster Fund. Here’s where my money went:
If you donated $100 to the RNC for the Bush/Cheney campaign that same year, here’s where your money went:
Apparently having failed to learn my lesson, I also gave $100 to the DNC in 2008:
Those of you who are fed up with this sort of institutionalized corruption—by which the masters of American politics waste money for personal gain even at the expensive of their own parties—might consider voting for Sarah Palin in 2012:
These took me a really long time to make.