TRENTON – Senator Joseph V. Doria, D-Hudson, a former Assembly Speaker who empanelled the bipartisan commission that initiated the last major campaign finance reforms passed in 1993, issued the following statement regarding today’s passage of pay to play reform by the Senate by a vote of 34-0:
“As Speaker and then as Minority Leader in the early 1990’s, I was very involved with the last comprehensive set of ‘reforms,’ which were universally hailed by the press at that time. These are the same reforms that have recently been pilloried by the media every day.
“Every time we reform the system, those who desire to skirt the rules find way to do so. The only surefire way to get money out of politics is to establish spending limits and to publicly fund every single election campaign on the local, county, state and federal levels. Not only will this diminish the importance of money in the process, it will level the playing field that that candidates from all strata of society can participate in the electoral process.
“The bill we passed today is definitely a step in the right direction toward changing the way the way we fund our election campaigns. We just must be honest with ourselves and with the public in acknowledging that this is no cure-all for what ails our political system. It is my sincere hope, however, that what we passed today will go some way in helping to improve the public’s confidence in our government.”