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MessagePosté le: Mar 17 Avr - 11:26 (2018)    Sujet du message: Antonio Morrison Colts Jersey Répondre en citant

LOS ANGELES, April 17 (Xinhua) -- The power of money in politics, a lingering grave concern in U.S. presidential elections, has triggered a dramatic turn of events during the weekend as protesters took to the streets to voice their anger.

Public fury was apparent when actor and director George Clooney and his wife Amal hosted a stellar fundraiser Saturday evening in support of Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton in Los Angeles, California. Tickets to the event, which was attended by about 150 supporters, started at 33,400 U.S. dollars.

Just outside the venue of the event, supporters of Clinton's Democratic nomination rival Bernie Sanders lined the street. Once Clinton's motorcade arrived, they held high slogans that read "Feel the Bern! Only $27."

Sanders has bought time to run an ad spot called "$27" on Los Angeles stations to contrast the average contribution to his campaign to that of some high-dollar events for Clinton.

Some Sanders supporters held signs that read "Goldman Sach's loves Hillary," in reference to a top investment bank, and some showered dollar notes on the motorcade of Clinton in an apparent jibe.

Clinton has set a target of raising 2.5 billion dollars for her presidential campaign. The two fundraisers hosted by Clooney, on Friday and Saturday respectively, have put in at least 15 million U.S. dollars for her, according to local media estimates.

Back in 2012, a fundraiser hosted by Clooney for Barack Obama with even more expensive tickets raised roughly the same amount.

"A lot of democrats are concerned about campaign finance, and she's slapping them in the face by continuing to hold these overpriced star-studded fundraisers," said a netizen who goes by the name "Poodle."

In a surprising turn of events, Clooney "broke ranks" over campaign financing by condemning the big sum of money in the presidential election.

"We had some protestors last night when we pulled up in San Francisco and they're right to protest. They are absolutely right. It is an obscene amount of money," he said in excerpts of an interview with NBC News.

"It's ridiculous that we should have this kind of money in politics. I agree completely," he said in the interview to be aired on Sunday.

Sanders has the support of many who described themselves as among the "99 percent," a reference to the belief that the country is run by only the 1 percent at the top, and sang songs like "This Land is Your Land."

Ironically, while taking a jibe at Clinton's zooming success with the super rich and star donors, Sanders has the support of a long list of stars, too, and is not very far behind Clinton thanks to crowd-funding. His campaign has asked donors to each contribute small amounts.

Most of the money has not gone directly into the campaigns, but into outside groups like super PACs (political action committees), or political fundraising organizations allowed to raise unlimited amounts of money from individuals and corporations. Third-party advertising and communication are common tactics used to work-around rules on political donation.

NATIONWIDE PROTEST

Ordinary voters are increasingly frustrated as the presidential elections have turned into a game of the rich and widened the social divide, sparking a week-long protest in Washington and nationwide demonstrations on Friday.

In Washington, police arrested 142 members of a liberal group called Democracy Spring denouncing the influence of special interests in politics.

Public anger went beyond the streets.

"Money is controlling politics and standing in our way," said the website of www.represent, a U.S. movement that has been in the spotlight recently as an increasing number of angry voters protested the influence of big money in politics. The website simply called such practices "corruption."

"Hillary is part of the elite on the Democratic side, and is no different from the elite on the Republican side. The problem with this attitude is you feel obligated to these donors because of their money," an Internet user commented on the website of ABC News.

There are good reasons to be worried. Studies in the past have confirmed a correlation between the fundraising ability of candidates and their chances of success in elections in the United States.

Another reason for the public to be worried is that the donations to the presidential hopefuls have been seen as political investments with good returns. Lobbyist groups have allowed the donors to wield huge influence over policy-making directly or indirectly.

Clinton has raised 33 million dollars in the first quarter of this year, including 1.5 million from lobbyists who have represented such corporate giants as Wal-Mart, oil firms BP and ExxonMobil, according to figures and declaration forms released on Friday.

Presidential hopeful Sanders has even called for overturning Citizen United, a 2010 Supreme Court decision that removed restrictions on unlimited outside spending in presidential contests.

However, the candidates running for the White House obviously can not afford cutting their fundraising activities.

Observers say that as much as the candidates decry money in politics, they are also pragmatic and do not want to cede the money race to their competitors.
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