In early June, NJ gubernatorial candidate and public banking supporter Phil Murphy won the Democratic Primary.
Is this the beginning of a new era of mainstream acceptance of public banking in American public policy? What does it mean for the movement?
Check out this blog post from the Public Banking Institute’s Blog…
Last week’s gubernatorial primary resulted not only in the ascension of candidate Phil Murphy to the threshold of the NJ statehouse, but also the elevation of public banking into mainstream political discourse for the entire country. Since Murphy adopted public banking as a core component of his economic recovery plan a year ago, the state has been abuzz with talk about the idea of having a state-owned bank: “What’s a public bank?” “You mean he wants to give those politicians a bank?” “Makes sense – why send our money to Wall Street?” And so on.
But aside from the curious, and sometimes spurious, inquiries into public banking from all corners of state life, the very fact that an ex-Goldman Sachs executive ran away with a 2 to 1 margin of support from a major political party means that public banking itself has crossed a threshold of mainstream political adoption. Murphy didn’t hold back on the idea, founded on American soil by the colonists in the early 18th century and vigorously reestablished by democratic insistence on the Plains of the Upper Midwest two hundred years later, Phil Murphy tapped into a proven method to actually save the people’s money while enabling investment into multiple categories of public need and public interest.
Officials around the country took notice of this bold policy proposal – a departure from textbook public finance. Here was a never-before-elected candidate running a winning campaign on an idea that seemed to violate all the old-boy schools of political thought and camaraderie, the protective cloak of business-as-usual being challenged by a fresh approach to actually making a systemic change in state finance.
Read more here…