Torres-Spelliscy and former legal intern Ari Weisbard catalogued the embarrassingly bad aspects of New York State's law:
- Aggregate contribution limits for individuals are sky-high--more than 3 times the median annual income for New York households;
- Unlike nearly half the states, New York does not ban corporate contributions and also allows donations from affiliates and subsidiaries, multiplying a corporation's influence;
- Party "housekeeping accounts," ostensibly formed to pay for headquarters and staff, may accept unlimited donations;
- Loose rules on the use of campaign contributions permit candidates and officials to spend money on questionable items;
- State contractors donating to campaigns can create "pay-to-play" conflicts; and
- Penalties for those who break the law are woefully inadequate.
The Brennan Center is pushing for comprehensive campaign finance reform in New York State with the ultimate goal of implementing a system of public financing.