The Aug. 13 cover of Time magazine is dramatic. But is it true? Can the White House be bought for $2.5 billion? Can billionaires pumping money into super PACS—sometime under the cover of anonymity—buy enough advertising to sway elections? See how Joan and Irwin Jacobs stack up, for example. Both GOP and Democratic donors use 501(c)4 groups to spend unlimited amounts and avoid being publicly revealed. Should the public be concerned?
Edititor’s note: An earlier version of this poll carried a headline that incorrectly reported the Jacobses’ donations as $2.18 billion.