What the clauses imply is the United States' responsibility to provide self-governance information as needed.

It can't be delegated to the states or the private sector.

The Public Debate is  Self-Governance


The Constitution implies the United States is responsible for providing needed information when elections, appointments and statutes are being publicly debated. It can’t be delegated to the states or the private sector.

  • The Electoral clause in Article I, Section 4, the clauses on Journals, Statements and Accounts in Article I, sections 5 and 9, and the Guarantee clause in Article IV (see The Constitution and Politics) imply the United States' responsibility to provide any information necessary to self-governance as needed. 
  • Filling a self-governance need even from a private source is a public function and a vital public interest (see Public vs Private Conduct). No private conduct may be allowed to interfere with the public interest, and private financing of any self-governance function could allow private interest to interfere with it (see Accountability and the Public Elections Clause).  
  • A Bright-Line Rule for Public Conduct points out an implied rule in the Preamble that may be seen more clearly by referring to the Declaration of Independence, which asserts that legitimate government depends on the consent of the governed (see Consent of the Governed). Preserving Consent in a Democracy argues that this makes public campaign finance a compelling state interest.


The label ‘campaign finance’ confuses on two points: that it addresses a need of candidates rather than the public, and that it then only applies to candidacies, not acts of Congress and the Executive. Who uses this information? Candidates have no need to be elected, only desire. The public chooses the country's direction from among position platforms and has the actual need for political information. 

Campaigning was insignificant to nonexistent in 1787 (candidates sometimes bought voters drinks or a meal) and was not mentioned in the Constitution. We need to decide our best interest before voting. It's in the electorate’s interest to understand Congress’ votes and their use of our money and our system. And before Congress passes bills or the Executive acts, they need the public's counsel. The Constitution specifically requires public journals, statements and accounts because of these self-governance needs. Gathering information regarding candidates meets the same needs. 

Private campaign funding and voluntary public campaign funding violate the purposes of all of these clauses.


This amendment expresses something the Constitution already implies in multiple clauses: United States funding of any information necessary to self-governance.