The thinking behind it, which was very ingenious, was that
State legislative races are cheap, and you can just put a bit of money into them and flip the statehouse…
And most people don’t pay a lot of attention to what’s going on in the states. …
But state legislatures are ground zero for where politics play out.
In the 2010 state races, where people don’t spend much money, he and the groups that he helped found — that were supposedly independent groups — spent $2.2 million.
It doesn’t sound like a lot nationally, but it can make all the difference in the context of one state.
So basically what you’re looking at is one very wealthy corporate captain who, when motivated enough, can exert enormous influence in a state.
–New Yorker staff writer Jane Mayer, Fresh Air Interview, on how one billionaire is targeting state level politics, which could be a template for national interests seeking to leverage their politics at a local level in these “cheap” races in the age of Citizens United.