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By David Keene
Conference showed that the values Reagan cherished still endure
Topic - Michael E. Toner
Not a single major candidate has signed up to take taxpayer-supported matching funds for his presidential campaign this year, signaling the death of the system that had controlled campaigns since the Watergate era.
Turns out politics, for all its focus on the gloomy economy, is a recession-proof industry.
The Republican National Committee failed to report more than $7 million in debt to the Federal Election Commission in recent months - a move that made its bottom line appear healthier than it is heading into the midterm elections and that also raises the prospect of a hefty fine.
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton has a former president plugging for her and helping her rake in millions. Sen. Barack Obama is walking door to door, telling supporters that a $5 contribution to his campaign can help spur political change.
"It used to be that only second-tier candidates accepted matching funds. Now not even they are doing so," said Michael E. Toner, a former FEC chairman.