George Soros has long sought to place philanthropic dollars where they count the most. One of his pet projects has been the abolition of the series of policies enforcement actions that broadly constitute the War on Drugs. Soros views this social policy as one of the worst ongoing affronts against civil liberties and an open society that the American nation has ever endured.
Over the years, Soros has pursued a number of policies designed to bring a swift end to the War on Drugs. While not all of these have enjoyed great success, some of his more recent forays into the realm of political action have yielded positive results. One of the most successful has been his efforts to replace hard line law & order prosecutors with more progressive-minded and liberal ones. This effort has largely centered around the South, but it would not be surprising to see Soros expand his efforts to the rest of the country, particularly considering the rates of success which he has thus far enjoyed.
One of the most notable cases of monetary intervention in the campaign of a up-and-coming prosecutor has been the instance of Aramis Ayala in the Orlando County prosecutor race. Ayala, a longtime public defender and the first black woman to run as prosecutor anywhere in the state of Florida, ran on a platform of leniency towards drug users and fairness in sentencing with regards to minorities. Her opponent, Jeff Ashton, had long fostered the reputation of a hard-line drug warrior, somebody not afraid to sacrifice minorities at the altar of order. Under his watch, the disproportion of minorities being sent to prison for crimes that sometimes hardly merited jail time at all exploded to levels never before seen in the Orlando area.
But Aramis Ayala had a problem. Her campaign lacked almost any financing. With only a few thousand dollars, the novice politician stood little chance of making headway versus her well-heeled and entrenched opponent. George Soros stepped in with a nearly $1.2 million donation, allowing Ayala to create a deluge of television ads and promotional messages on the internet. The money also bought sophisticated campaign strategists, who help guide Ayala through the complex maze of electoral politics.
The strategy worked. In an unprecedented landslide election, Ayala became the first black prosecutor in the state of Florida’s history, unseating her long entrenched incumbent, who had been prosecutor for the better part of two decades. This was almost exclusively attributable to the gigantic donation that George Soros bequeathed to her campaign, without which she would have stood virtually no chance of winning versus the powers-that-be. Visit projectsyndicate.com to know more about George.
This represented a major victory for Soros and a major blow against the policies of the drug war.