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Posts Tagged ‘Don’t Get Rolled’

People are taking action across the country to mark the one-year anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that corporate political spending is the same thing as real speech by real people.

Left unchecked, the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling will have grave consequences for our democracy. In last fall’s elections, corporate spending soared, and sources of outside spending were kept secret. This outside money was a major factor in 80 percent of the races where power changed hands.

Now, any lawmaker who is interested in standing against corporate interests has to figure out how to say ‘no’ to corporate lobbyists wielding the resources to replace him or her with a more corporate-friendly lawmaker.

But We, the People are mobilizing to fight back.

From Massachusetts to Oregon, Florida to Alaska, more than 100 demonstrations are being held throughout the nation.
Even a group of socially conscious business corporations, led by Ben & Jerry’s, is standing up to assert that we need a constitutional amendment to stop the corporate takeover of our democracy.

Nearly a million concerned citizens have signed petitions calling on Congress to pass such a constitutional amendment — petitions that will be delivered to Congress at noon today (Public Citizen’s petition is at www.DontGetRolled.org).

If you’re participating in today’s actions, be sure to take pictures, make videos, blog and tweet about what you’re doing. You can share your photos, videos and other documentation with us by sending an email to action@citizen.org, sending a tweet to @Public_Citizen or posting it on our Facebook page. (more…)

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We’ve seen an extraordinary amount of enthusiasm in recent weeks for our effort to build a grassroots movement for a constitutional amendment to restore free speech and fair elections to the people.

In our recent survey, activists across the nation expressed interest in supporting our effort to undo the Supreme Court’s disastrous decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission by gathering petition signatures.

So we created a printer-friendly version of the constitutional amendment petition (PDF), a tip sheet about how to gather petition signatures and a web page where activists can pledge to collect signatures.

We’re already coordinating with activists in Washington, D.C., who are planning to help us gather signatures at several events, including Jon Stewart’s Rally to Restore Sanity. And we’re encouraging activists across the nation to help build the movement by gathering signatures in their own communities.

Petitioning is a fundamental way to show Congress and others in power that the American people demand action against the threat to our democracy posed by the flood of unlimited corporate money into our elections. And we’re convinced that once they hear about it, millions more will join this cause.

As Americans gather this fall for events ranging from local festivals and concerts to political rallies and demonstrations, everyone can play a critical role by collecting signatures.

So take the pledge to gather signatures for the Don’t Get Rolled petition. If you have any questions or ideas, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at action@citizen.org.

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The folks over at the Center for Competitive Politics, a right-wing think tank, must think corporate front groups who run campaign ads are totally awesome.

They just issued a poll that they claim demonstrates public opposition to the DISCLOSE Act – even though their own numbers actually demonstrate broad public support for disclosure!

Jesse Zwick over at the Washington Independent skewers the poll – scarily titled, “Voters skeptical of intrusive disclosure.” (more…)

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In today’s WaPo, columnist E.J. Dionne says that the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which gave corporations the green light to spend unlimited funds in elections, was either “the most Machiavellian in American history or the most naive” decision the high court has made.

In Citizens United, the court’s “5 to 4 conservative majority broke with decades of precedent and said Congress had no right to ban corporate or labor union spending to influence the outcome of elections,” Dionne said. “The decision is Machiavellian if (more…)

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One year ago today, the U.S. Supreme Court held a special session to re-hear arguments in the now infamous Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission case that that led to the disastrous decision allowing corporations to spend as much money as they want influencing our elections.

And now our worst predictions about the Supreme Court ruling are coming true.

Target and Best Buy already have contributed more than $100,000 apiece to the campaign of a corporate candidate for governor of Minnesota.

However, the lack of disclosure laws enable most corporate contributions to remain in the dark and avoid the sort of backlash Target (and to a lesser extent Best Buy) (we know about these contributions only because of Minnesota’s disclosure laws, which are currently being contested in court by defenders of secret electioneering).

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce plans to spend more than $75 million this election season. Karl Rove’s American Crossroads plans to spend $50 million. Americans for Prosperity, an arm of the billionaire Koch brothers’ empire of corporate Astroturf, plans to spend more than $45 million. All told, hundreds of millions in corporate cash are expected to flood the election.

No doubt about it, we democracy-loving people are in the midst of the fight of our lives. Thankfully, there are solutions to the problem of corporate domination in our democracy. (more…)

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Stunning Statistics of the Week:

  • Amount political parties and outside groups have spent on ads this election season: $150 million
  • Amount political parties and outside groups spent on ads at this point in 2006: $109 million
  • Percent of those ads this election season that have been negative: nearly 80 percent
  • Source here.

Video highlights effects on real people of money in politics
A new video from FairElectionsNow.org features real people describing in their own words the profound impact of corporate corruption in Washington. The video shows how big agriculture, corporate coal and BP play the money game to make government work for them – not the American public. As long as members of Congress must rely on donations from corporations and lobbyists to fund their campaigns, wealthy corporate interests will continue to have an outsized role in crafting national policies.

Where there’s smoke, there’s fire: Three members of Congress still in hot water with ethics committee
Enough evidence of wrongdoing exists to continue investigating the link between fundraising events and votes made by three members of Congress, according to the Office of Congressional Ethics. The office is recommending further investigation of three members of the House of Representatives who held fundraisers just days before casting votes on financial reform legislation. The three are Reps. John Campbell (R-Calif.), Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.) and Tom Price (R-Ga.). Five other members were cleared.

Texans rally against U.S. Supreme Court ruling
Despite a heat index of 104 degrees, folks in Texas rallied recently against the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which opened the door for unlimited corporate spending to influence elections. Watch the video here.

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A new video from our friends at FairElectionsNow.org features real people describing in their own words the profound impact of corporate corruption in Washington. You can see from the video that big agriculture, corporate coal and BP are all playing the money game to make government work for them and not the American public.

As long as members of Congress must rely on donations from corporations and lobbyists to fund their campaigns, these special interests will continue to have a huge advantage over real people when it comes to finding policy solutions for the people’s problems.

After you watch the video, urge your members of Congress to end the political money chase by supporting public financing of elections via the Fair Elections Now Act at http://www.citizen.org/supportfairelectionsnow.

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