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Does Corporate Money Lead to Political Corruption?

U.S. silver dollar, extreme closeup

U.S. silver dollar, extreme closeup

WASHINGTON — “There are two things that are important in politics,” Mark Hanna, the great Republican kingmaker of the late 19th century, once said. “The first thing is money, and I can’t remember what the second one is.”

What was true in Hanna’s century remained true in the next, and since the Watergate scandal of the 1970s, Congress has imposed stricter regulations on money in politics. Advocates of those rules argue that they rein in corruption and increase public trust in government.

But after more than three decades, has the system made a difference?

The question took on new urgency last week as the supreme Court threw out …….