Donald Trump killed the idea of the Republican Party nomination going to the highest bidder. This is the best campaign reform in the history of American politics. Billionaires no longer own the Republican Party. They still own the Democratic Party, of course. But Trump's reform has one delicious irony.
Trump's self-funded campaign was made possible by Buckley v. Valeo in 1976.
Now then, the Democratic Party had used the Watergate affair and a weak Republican president to pass the Democratic Party Protection Act of 1974. That was not the name of it, of course, but in the name of campaign reform, Democrats dropped campaign donations to a ridiculously low level while allowing unions to continue to campaign as usual.
Enter Conservative Party Senator James L. Buckley and Democratic Senator Eugene McCarthy -- as well as the ACLU and other groups -- to challenge the law. The restrictions on donations came in part because McCarthy had found a couple of liberal millionaires to fund his quixotic presidential campaign in 1968 which caused President Johnson to not seek a second full-term. Democrats were not about to let that happen again.
Buckley's brother was William F. Buckley Jr. who founded the National Review and the neo-conservative movement with its call for interventionism and unbridled free trade, both of which Trump wants to rein in.
The Supreme Court heard the challenge -- Buckley v. Valeo as it came to be known -- and among other things struck down the restriction on financing one's own campaign. Now, 40 years later, we see Trump is not renting himself to billionaires, but instead spending his own money on the campaign.
And he is kicking ass.
The other Republican candidates spent $600 million of money from their overlords. Trump spent $36 million -- most of it his own. Trump will be the nominee.
Oh and the official Establishment-sanctioned Anti-Establishment candidate, Ted Cruz, has raised nearly $120 million.
Let's see, $36 million divided by 845 delegates is $42,603.
And $120 million divided by 559 delegates is $214,669.
Spend more, get less. And yet we are told Cruz is this super organizing genius and Trump cannot run a lemonade stand. Yet Cruz spends like a drunken federal bureaucrat and still isn't halfway to 1,237.
Anyway, when officially nominated, Trump should give a shout out to the brother of the founder of the publication that hates him so much.