What $2,000 Buys
Congress must enact a ban on the political contributions known as soft money, but that shouldn't come at the price of relaxing controls in another part of the structure that delivers millions of dollars to candidates each year. The version of reform now apparently on its way to a presidential signature is actually a step backward. Senators John McCain and Russell D. Feingold, after years of championing more comprehensive reform, have yielded to supporting a soft-money ban that comes with a doubling of the amount that a wealthy individual can contribute directly to a candidate -- hard money. The bill raises the limit to $2,000 from the current $1,000.