Big money is swamping Seattle's democracy voucher model of public financing for elections as powerful donors are funding outside Super PAC type committees to influence election of city council candidates, many of whom are only accepting small donations through vouchers given out free to voters. For example, billionaire Amazon owner Jeff Bezos gave $450,000 to a group called "Civic Alliance for a Sound Economy" which can spend its $1.7 million war chest to support candidates who accept vouchers even though he could only directly give $250 to candidates participating in the voucher program

One councilmember is proposing a $5000 limit on what anyone can give to an outside PAC, but that would likely be struck down by an activist Supreme Court under precedent of Citizens United and other rulings in the Roberts era.