His latest article seemed flawed from the first line:
Over the past few months, there’s been a torrent of commentary about political donations and campaign spending. This lavish coverage is based on the premise that campaign spending has an important influence on elections.
The coverage is based partly on that premise, but also on the premise that spending influences governance. Health care reform helps insurance companies. Bailouts help recipients. The stimulus helped all sorts of Democratic interest groups. These groups are all big contributors. Also, individual congressmen depend on party leadership for funding and support, because elections are so expensive. As a result, they’re more beholden to party leadership and less able to compromise or change what’s wrong in Washington.
But, I think Brooks over-concludes and under-proves his argument that money isn’t important in elections. Nobody thinks it’s literally the only factor. Nobody thinks every marginal dollar works the same way for every candidate in every race. Nobody thinks the way money is used is irrelevant to its impact. He seems to be creating these myths just so he can defeat them. Brooks is much better than that.