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There is a commonly shared concern among Koreans that Korean politics is much too costly yet inefficient. The issue of money politics and corruption therefore has repeatedly dominated the media and public debate, especially during the election years. Despite repeated reform attempts, many weaknesses in the regulatory system still remain and the opaque nature of political financing persists. This paper argues that one of the major contributing factors to these policy failures is that previous reform measures were undertaken without a knowledge or understanding of the facts regarding the financing of political funds in Korea. This paper will bringing to show that analyses of the official NEC data on political funds are useful in light many of the problems embedded in both the legal and institutional aspects of Korea’s political finance system. For instance, the presence of significant advantages for the incumbent in accessing political funds limits competition and fairness, and leads to the entrenchment of elected officials who are detached from their constituents. The official data also reveal evidence of strong linkages between the politicians and moneyed interests, making the political system vulnerable to corruption. In addition, Korea’s party system’s weak grass-root support base allows domination by central party bosses; hence, the party system is weak in providing accountability, responsibility, deliberation, and competition. Finally, the most telling signal that Korea’s political system is in need of reform comes ironically, not from what the official funds data are able to tell, but from what they are unable to tell. That is, the lack of transparency itself can be seen as an indicator that Korea’s political finance system lacks credibility and accountability.