I was pleased to see the April 9 Leonard Pitts column declaring that money in politics has become “a clear and present danger.” Equally refreshing was to learn about the Citizens Congress 2014 in California, trying to develop strategies to reduce the influence of money in elections.

Here in Maine we are fortunate to have the Clean Elections public funding system working to achieve that. It has been in place for more than 10 years now and has become a popular program used by a majority of candidates running for the Maine Legislature.

I hope we can strengthen it so that candidates who select that process will once again have a level playing field when running against those who use private donations for their campaigns.

Equally important, we need to put a system in place for congressional elections modeled after Maine’s pioneering publicly funded elections approach.

The growing gulf between the rich and the poor, coupled with the failure of Congress to address the critical problems of our day, shows what the undue influence of big money has done to our country. We must fight back to restore American democracy.

Cushman D. Anthony
Falmouth