BeanThere wrote, "But what you are referring to, let's be open about it, is using financial clout to purchase politicians."
Yes, that is the central problem with our system. The role of money in elections. It is too easy to influence politicians. Before every election they have $1000 plate dinners and one by one contributors tell the candidates what they want in return for their donation. It is a horrible system. Elections should be about votes, not about donations. Volunteers should go door to door, rather than all the campaign advertising in the media. There really needs to be a way to stop the advertising but I don't know a way, especially since the Supreme Court equated paid advertising by an organization as "free speech". (That case was a couple of decades back.)