College Affordability Proposal : A Likely Topic Up for Debate in DNC’s Presidential Nomination Contest

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is all set to stage the first of the sanctioned candidate debates, come June and July 2019. One important topic stands out as a common proposal among candidates qualified to participate in the debates: College Affordability.

Mark Huelsman, a prominent think-tank Senior Policy Analyst, believes qualifying candidates for the debate, will likely argue on which college affordability proposal makes the most sense; or if it is even sensible at all.

A nationally recognized expert on college affordability and Asso. Director of Policy and Research at Demos, Huelsman says that during the past years, left-leaning policymakers and economists have been building a consensus that some kind of student-debt cancellation may actually be beneficial for the U.S. economy. Huelman mentioned further that


“You’re going to see some pretty bold proposals on debt relief or debt cancellation from candidates.”

Only one candidate thinks that free college tuition or debt-free college is not viable. Minnesota Democrat Senator Amy Klobuchar said

“I wish — if I were a magic genie and could give that to everyone and we could afford it, I would.”

College Affordability Proposals Backed or Mulled on by Democratic Presidential Candidates

College affordability proposals come in 7 topics: Tuition-Free College, Debt-
Free College, Student Loan Servicer Regulation, For-Profit College Regulation, Student-Loan Refinancing, Debt Relief and College Accountability. Of the 7 proposals, only Tuition-Free College and Debt-Free College have definite plans for whom and on how they will be carried out.

Tuition-Free College

This proposal vows free tuition for all, regardless of financial need; allowing students with low income or coming from low-income households to actually have a chance to participate. Free-college for all intends to include those coming from wealthier families as it may attract political buy-ins that would make the program work.

Bernie Sanders, Vermont’s longest serving Independent Senator, will continue to push the tuition-free education in public colleges that he unveiled previously in the 2016 elections. His proposal includes imposing taxes on institutions involved in investments trading of stocks, bonds and their derivatives, as a way of raising government funds for the program.

Debt-Free College

Although similar to the Tuition-Free College proposal, it has a different context as embodied in the Debt-Free College Act of 2018 introduced by Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), along with House Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wisconsin-2). The proposed bill aims to create a new partnership between federal and state governments, focused on providing funds to the country’s neglected system of public colleges. The goal is to provide students with free and flexible training, without having to worry about steep tuition fees or onerous student loans.

Here, students from working-class families will have priority, and will extend to students coming from public and private Minority Serving Institutions. The Debt-Free College Act will also restore eligibility of non-violent drug offenders.

Current Democratic presidential candidates who co-sponsored this bill include Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), Sen. Kamala Harris (CA) and Sen. Cory Booker (N.J.).

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Transparency In Financing Political Campaigns

The appeal for transparency is not just a trend that will gradually fade over time. Voters around the world demand that politicians publish more of their personal, financial, as well as other important campaign information than ever before. This demand results in the government launching and testing new initiatives to encourage a transparent political agenda as demonstrated in providing access to government data to simple yet easy to use government websites.

Need Money Now fast loans may provide your political career a boost but there are other sources that candidates may consider. The bottom line of it all is that funding is critical at this period of any political career.

Traditionally, the media has been responsible for keeping the government honest with voters. With the surge of social media, blogs and other regulatory organizations, the demand for political transparency had become easier than in the past few decades. Politicians and other public figures is subject to strict public scrutiny in the words they say to the tiniest action they do. This growing demand for political visibility is among the feature that the modern campaign process embodies. Regardless of the political strategy that politicians follow it is still important to adhere by the law in campaign financing to avoid dissolution of campaigns.

Where to start with political transparency? Is it important?

The presidential campaign in 2016 proved that American voters would like to choose candidates that seem to have nothing to conceal. Voters would like transparent politicians who act, discuss and make day-to-day choices that reflect the best interests of their constituents. A single false move from a vying politician will lead voters to rethink about the credibility of a candidate.

The political manager who wins the competition must recognize the value of transparency in the period of campaign. Without having transparency, voters may cast distrust on candidates and even persuade a full investigation of their financial or personal transactions. This may become an inflammatory story of the media that may result in the waste of the advertising campaign. In order to get rid of these rumors, honestly carry out promotional activities from the beginning, focusing on key areas, such as discussing campaign finances and personal affairs in traditional media and through social media platforms.

The Media Being A Government Regulator

As mentioned earlier, the media has traditionally served as a government regulator, regardless of any corruption or embarrassment. The media continuously uncovered corruption, from the Watergate scandal to Bill Clinton’s infidelity. They conveyed to the voters the insider information inherent in the political system. With this in mind, the relationship between your candidate and the media is crucial. Willingness to resolve rumors, make statements and share a variety of Intel can make any political figure less likely to be the target of the media.

The main issue that causes tension between the politicians and the media is the changing readership audience and readership expectations. With the rapid decline of print news and the surge of a sensitive 24/7 news cycle, media organizations must regularly promote compelling stories to attract and retain the attention of their audience.

This is the key to high fixed costs. Long-term survey work requires more resources than small-scale reporting. At the same time, American voters tend to focus more on rapid scandals and complex corruption cases than on candidates’ long-term support for a specific cause, or legal work to boost certain low-key or less-obtrusive community characteristics, such as environmental reforms and proposal for urban housing.

This means that your campaign must carefully craft a plot with the media rather than giving them any reason to incite all aspects of the candidate’s business transactions and even invade their personal life. Should they have any scandals that can be revealed, resolve these scandals rather than making your campaigns look like something had been hidden.

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The Guardian Identifies 3 Foreign Personas Whose LLC Contributed Funds to Trump’s Inauguration

Under US election laws, foreigners are barred from contributing money as aid to finance political campaigns, including inaugurations. Non-resident foreigners in particular, who are found to have knowingly or unwittingly violated such rule will be fined and/or prosecuted. In Trump’s case, the inaugural committee in charge of handling the presidential inauguration, accepted donations from US registered shell companies that had direct connections to foreign nationalities.

In business parlance, a legal entity becomes a shell company if after incorporation and registration it continues to exist only on paper, as it does not engage in any business activity, maintain employees, or set up an office, but may hold a bank account and other types of passive investment.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) asserts that the use of shell companies poses as problem in determining and ascertaining the legality and transparency of political donations. However, recent developments related to other investigations concerning Donald Trump’s activities as incumbent president of the US, have prompted Attorney Generals in Washington D.C. and in New Jersey, as well as federal prosecutors in New York to demand documents supporting the contributions accepted and spent by Trump’s Inaugural Committee.

The Guardian Follows Paper Trails Leading to the Identification of 3 Foreign Nationals

In verifying the list of donations accepted by the Trump Inaugural Committee via documents submitted to the FEC, the Guardian took note of three (3) indeterminate corporations that handed over $25,000 donation each for Trump’s inaugural ceremonies. In following the paper trail, The Guardian was able obtain documents and information that led to the identity of foreign nationals connected to the shell corporations.

Cyrus Vandrevala, a London-based financier tied to a shell company registered as Sierra Vista LLC in Delaware but with business address in Wayne, Pennsylvania. Born in Mumbai, India, Vandrevala holds an Indian passport obtained from Delhi. He is related by affinity to Niranjan Hiranandani, president of a prominent real estate lobby group in India, and is recognized as one of the country’s wealthiest member of the Indian real estate industry.

Cyrus Vandrevala, a son-in-law of Hiranandani, claims he funds property developments in India, whilst also operating property development firms in the US. The firm claims to have amassed $7 billion in investment funds for building homes in Mumbai and Pune, cities in which Trump Towers are located.

David Sean, an American-Taiwanese businessman also known as Pong Hsiang and creator of Jan Castle LLC, a shell company with only a mailbox address to show, yet able to have made a $25,000 donation to the Trump Inaugural Committee.

Records obtained by The Guardian from various state authorities across the US show that Sean has created several other shell companies somewhere in California, Georgia, Florida, Nevada and Wyoming during the past two decades; using only 10 mailboxes as addresses.

In a telephone interview with Sean’s wife, The Guardian learned that Jan Castle LLC was created for and in behalf of 3 Chinese investors, one of whom was identified through the company’s original filing documents as Jianning. David Sean though, later denied his wife’s interview statement, and refused to discuss the business activities of Jan Castle LLC and the people behind it.

Elon Lebouvich, an Israeli real estate businessman who created a company called New York State Property Management Corporation. It paid a $25,000 contribution to the Trump inaugural fund 3 days before Trump was sworn-in.

The Guardian got hold of information from Brooklyn City records that Lebouvich, currently has an ongoing retail property development project in Crown Heights, worth $5 million. The property being developed is owned by another LLC owned and controlled by the mother of Lebouvich’s legal counsel.

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