Nicholas Carnes, Sanford School of Public Policy, Duke University
"Running for office is too expensive — and therefore off-limits— for the vast majority of Americans. The space on our ballots is becoming the exclusive turf of the wealthy and the well-connected."
Martin Gilens, Princeton University
"If the rich are having such a hard time turning dollars into votes, do we really need to worry about money distorting American politics? Yes we do."
Benjamin I. Page, Northwestern University
"The need to raise money acts as a filter, tending to eliminate public officials who hold certain points of view — even points of view that are popular with most Americans."
Kay Lehman Schlozman, Boston College
"When individual citizens seek to make their voices heard..., the well-educated have many advantages. However, when politically active organizations seek influence, the critical resource is money."