Electoral finance reforms could relax limits on expenditures, but should also feature full transparency with adequate verification and enforcement mechanisms.
The rise of wealthy candidates is driven by the weak representative role of India’s elected politicians, which discourages quality governance and leads elected politicians to view their election campaign as an economic investment in the future.
The State Department and USAID can pursue an array of internal and external initiatives to combat corruption globally, especially in countries that have faced recent political transitions.
Costlier elections may not result from lower levels of morality in the political class or from a surge in bribe giving. They instead likely flow from rising levels of political competition.
Despite obvious obfuscation, there is much to be learned from asking politicians about campaign finance and the role of black money in Indian elections.
Public anger at corruption has become perhaps the most powerful driver of political change around the world.
While genuine political finance reform would be politically popular for the BJP, recent moves have done little to enhance transparency or dampen flow of black money.
If it fully implements policies aimed at Russia and Iran, the Trump administration risks damaging relations with India and losing support on other issues of importance.
India is no stranger to the dilemma of money in politics, but this nexus has not been the subject of sustained scholarly attention.
The consensus on economic globalisation and a relative harmony among the major powers—which defined the post Cold War era—is now breaking down.