The last Dayton Mayoral election cost over $700,000, the one before that was $500,000. What sane person spends that much money to run for a job that pays $36,000 a year? Candidates tell you that they the are best choice to manage our City’s limited budget, I say it’s time to put their money where their mouth’s are.
I challenge the candidates to each limit spending to a maximum of $36,000, raised in no more than $100 donations from any household.
No PAC or party money. No smear campaigns from special interest groups. Just straight talking, old fashioned debating, in moderated forums and utilizing grassroots movements.
If the candidates truly care about this city, and have the vision to improve our city through shrewd financial discipline, they should be the first to welcome this opportunity. This could put Dayton on the map as innovators in campaign finance reform, much as we were on the forefront of the City Manager form of government 100 years ago.
I offer my services to build a coalition to moderate, and help promote both candidates in a non-partisan, fair forum, supplying a website to provide news and a forum for discussion of ideas in the mayoral race.
Or maybe it’s time to skip elections all together? We could create a local reality TV show, like “The Apprentice” to challenge the candidates to come up with solutions to local problems and use call in numbers like American Idol to choose our next Mayor. We could even sell TV commercials to refill the city coffers.
The next step is up to the candidates to contact me, or pick a moderator of their choosing.
In the mean time, it’s up to the voters to ask the candidates why they haven’t accepted this challenge. This should be easy compared to running our city.
What do you think?