Money trail

Donors' influence on candidates' views
Former Iowa governor Tom Vilsack has abandoned his quest for the presidency because he could not raise sufficient funds. His departure is yet another strong argument for campaign finance reform.

Usually governors do well in early primaries. But this year, with large and expensive-to-run-in states like Florida, California and Illinois moving their primaries to February 2008, private donors and special-interest money will control the outcome. Leading Democratic candidates Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are both expected to reject public funding in order to be able to raise and spend unlimited private money.


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