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Ben Cohen Of Ice Cream Fame Talks Campaign Finance Reform During Stop In Rochester

Ben Cohen & Jeb Puryear(of Donna the Buffalo)
Randy Gorbman
Ben Cohen & Jeb Puryear(of Donna the Buffalo)

A man who is part of a famous ice-cream making duo, made a stop in Rochester Friday as part of one of his other passions. Ben Cohen, co-founder of Ben & Jerry's is here to talk about campaign finance reform.

He was in town for an appearance with the popular Western New York band, Donna the Buffalo, at the German House in Rochester for an event called 'The Stampede."  It's part of an effort involving both Cohen and musicians to find a way to end the excessive influence of money in politics.

“I don’t like the influence of corporations and the ultra-wealthy essentially bribing politicians to create financial benefit for the corporations and the ultra-wealthy at the expense of everybody else.”

He says that since a  recent Supreme Court decision on campaign financing, “… 80 percent of all the money that’s spent in elections comes from corporations and the wealthiest Americans .”

Cohen and others are selling rubber stamps that can be used to put messages on paper currency. They say things like "Stamp money out of politics", and "not to be used for bribing politicians."

He says the group has received legal opinions that it's ok to stamp currency as long as it's not being defaced to the point that it can't be used properly.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.