Amazon Retails The Vote

Discussion
Jan 26, 2004
George Anderson

By George Anderson


Regulars to Amazon.com are treated to an ever-expanding variety of products to buy and now they can even make a contribution of up to $200 to their favorite presidential candidate,
if they wish.


According to its Web site, Amazon’s motivation for offering this service is to try and “take the friction out of grass-roots contributions to presidential candidates. We’re making
it as easy for people to contribute as it is to buy the latest Harry Potter.”


Amazon’s Web site currently lists 17 candidates, listed in alphabetical order, who have registered for the November election. In addition to recognizable names such Kerry, Dean
and Edwards, there are also lesser (unknown) candidates for the Democratic, Independent, Libertarian and Republican parties.


Perpetual candidate Lyndon La Rouche Jr., running for the Democratic nomination, is among the candidates included on Amazon.


As of 1/23/04, the two candidates receiving the greatest contribution were Sen. John F. Kerry, D-Mass. ($6,660.73) and syndicated radio talk show host Gary P. Nolan, who seeking
the Libertarian Party’s nomination ($5,947.00).


President Bush and Sen. Joseph Lieberman are listed, but neither candidate’s campaign is accepting donations made through Amazon.


Federal law allows for an individual to contribute of up to $2000 total per candidate


Moderator’s Comment: What are your thoughts on Amazon or other retailer offering a service that allows customers to make contributions to candidates
for public office?


Amazon says it is not backing any political candidate.
George
Anderson – Moderator


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