Total spending for the 2012 election cycle amounted to $6.3 billion. What do donors get for all that money? Tax breaks, government contracts, favorable regulation. Who pays the return on investment? We do.
Whether international corporations or public-sector unions, every corporate entity giving to a political candidate expects something back. Prior to January 2009, the government could restrict campaign contributions in an effort to decrease corruption, or the appearance of corruption. Not now.
In Citizens United, the Supreme Court decided that when the Constitution refers to the rights of people, it includes “corporate people”; and when it refers to freedom of speech, money is included as speech, so Congress cannot regulate how speech money is spent.
This makes no sense to us. We know our representatives are representing their funders, not their constituents. Being so dependent on the system, they cannot change it without significant intervention from us.
Two things you can do to take action today are: first, contact your Illinois General Assembly representatives and ask them to co-sponsor SJRes-27, recommending Congress amend the Constitution to declare corporations are not people and money is not speech; second, contact your congressman and ask him to co-sponsor HJRes-29, the We the People amendment. See IllinoisMoveToAmend.com.
From the May 1-7, 2013, issue