Political Donors as the Judges of Right and Wrong
Readers of the Sunday Providence Journal will be familiar with the “In Quotes” column that typically appears on page A2; basically it’s a few notable quotes from the week, usually with a picture of the speaker. This week, one in particular caught my eye, because it’s from Brown professor Wendy Schiller, and I think it expresses a surprisingly simplistic thought for a political science professional.
On the huge inflow of funds to Gina Raimondo’s campaign fund:
If this person who’s advocating changing the pension system can attract that kind of support, it is an external signal that she’s on the right track.
Actually, it’s not. It’s a signal that people with big money to devote to politics like something about Raimondo’s prospects. No doubt, some of it has been donated in admiration for her pension efforts, but (as I’ve been suggesting for a while, now) some of it is surely related to her likelihood to be a progressive warrior when she translates her pension caché into a higher office.
It’s a bit humorous, though, to read a Brown professor seeing big campaign money as a form of validation. I haven’t followed Schiller closely enough to offer this as more than a musing, but I do wonder whether her analysis would be the same were the treasurer likely to be a far-right stalwart once she’d moved on from the pension mess and the treasurer’s office.