CFB Punts

The ruling from the Campaign Finance Board today seems to be, basically, good news for Gifford.

The Board voted to deny Miller his final chunk of matching funds, not an insubstantial amount of money, but a slap on the wrist in comparison to the kind of crippling penalties the Board could have levied if it found that he’d, for example, already broken the spending cap.

Instead, the Board voted to defer judgement on his shading the line between petitioning and campaign expenses until a post-campaign audit, essentially putting the Miller campaign back in business.

Few in city politics seem to doubt that the old regime at the Campaign Finance Board would have come down much harder on the Miller campaign. The more relaxed stance from the new Board is good news for candidates and their consultants, many of whom consider the Board irrationally harsh. Defenders of the system, however, worry that laxness is the first step toward the demise of public financing.