There are just a few weeks to go until America votes in the 2018 midterm elections. The progressive political action committee End Citizens United (ECU) has endorsed many candidates for political office this year who support campaign finance reform.
This organization was founded in 2015 and is headquartered in the nation’s capital. End Citizens United was formed in response to End Citizens United vs. FEC court case that wound up being heard by the Supreme Court. This court disastrously sided with End Citizens United. As a direct result of that ruling, corporations can not inject endless amounts of dark money into political campaigns without any restrictions. Follow the group on LinkedIn.
End Citizens United has endorsed dozens of candidates for office this election cycle. As they point out there is a huge amount at stake in this election. Some of the candidates they have endorsed are seeking to replace Republicans who currently serve in the House or the Senate.
This PAC vigorously opposed Judge Brett Kavanaugh being appointed to the Supreme Court. He was a disastrous pick for many reasons who threatens the rights of millions of people in the United States. He is a right-wing extremist who wants to overturn Roe vs. Wade and supports the Supreme Court decision that allowed corporations to take over American politics.
Their opinion at this organization is that he will help further rig the system so that corporate special interests are able to get even more of their wishes fulfilled. Throughout his history as a Federal Judge Brett Kavanaugh has shown that he almost always supports the interests corporations and wealthy people over those of average Americans. If there is a court case in the future where campaign finance reform is involved he will no doubt be the deciding vote blocking it.
The team behind ECU has opposed Supreme Court nominations in the past like they have Brett Kavanaugh. They were also against Judge Merrick Garland in 2006. Additionally, they opposed Donald Trump’s last Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch. He, too, supports corporations over people.
End Citizens United is fighting the Supreme Court’s ruling that allowed corporations to pour money into campaigns without oversight or limit. This fight is due to the results of the case of Citizens United vs. the Federal Election Committee in 2010. With a 5 to 4 vote the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Citizens United and just like the other decisions that changed the axis of the earth like the Dred Scott vs. Sanford case in 1857, Brown vs. the Board of Education in 1954 and Roe vs. Wade in 1973 we are still reeling from its real-world implications.
The other rulings were facing citizenry clinging to a dying viewpoint. Their voices soon died down when up against the much larger community that disagreed with their views. The Citizen’s United decision is in the middle of being fought. The dissenting voices are growing and getting louder and more pronounced. Politicians are joining with other groups like End Citizens United to fight this decision. Read more news about the group on USA Today.
In March 2015, End Citizens United began its fight. So for the past three years the fight has been building. End Citizens United and the American public can all attest to the increase in political ads on radio and television because of the ruling. Because of the Republican ties to supporters with deep pockets, they have been the party to benefit the most from the Citizens United ruling; the Koch brothers, the Walton’s and Betsy DeVos are the most prominent supporters.
One benefit enjoyed by the Republican Party after the ruling was the millions of dollars raised for the 2010 mid-terms, which resulted in a wave of candidates winning elections for Senate and House seats. This ruling has provoked a loud outcry from the voting public and many organizations that see the unfairness. The Democratic Party, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the League of Women Voters, The Center for Political Accountability, and the Sunlight Foundation are all combining forces to call for a Constitutional Amendment to overturn the Citizens United decision.
The Supreme Court assigned corporations the same right to free speech as the individual citizen. In time, the citizen should regain its rightful place as the lone holder of the right to free speech and corporations will once again have far less influence over our politics.
Two rogue and extremely wealthy donors have emerged as the highest spenders on political campaigns for the 2018 mid-term elections. One of the billionaires is on the right while the other one is a leftist. These two tycoons have defied their political parties and spent millions of dollars on campaign tactics that have been seen to be confrontational by many political spectators. One of the billionaires is a former hedge fund manager who is based in the Golden State; Tom Stayer. He happens to be the most conspicuous donor who supports candidates from the Democratic Party. On the conservative side is Richard Uihlein. Mr Uihlein is a renowned magnate in the packaging supplies industry. Mr Steyer also happens to stir controversy within the inners circles of the Democratic Party. He has in the past lashed out at Democratic lawmakers for being too timid.
According to End Citizens United, Mr Steyer has also funded advertisements that call for the impeachment of President Donald Trump. The direct spending on political campaigns by Mr Steyer goes through the Climate Action by NextGen. The NextGen Climate Action is an advocacy group controlled by Mr Steyer. He also finances the group and passes finances to the traditional liberal PACs. Steyer has spent more money in this year’s election campaigns as compared to the last two mid-term polls combined according to actionnetwork.org. Apart from the campaign funds that have been documented by the Federal Election Commission, Steyer has invested money to the tune of $20 million in a campaign to remove trump from the presidency. The impeachment campaign involves TV and digital ads and billboards that have been placed in high traffic places such as the Times Square in New York.
On the Republican side, Mr Uihlein has been behind the Republican Party committees that support hard-liner members of the Conservative Party. Uihlein increased his spending on political campaigns during the 2016 presidential election. He has also spent money that is close to the total sum that he spent in the entire election cycle last season. He was an influential power broker in the political circles of Wisconsin and Illinois. However, Uihlein has taken on a political approach that is even more aggressive this year. He has been a significant force behind the Republican primaries ahead of the elections later in November. Uihlein has also donated handsome amounts of cash to a super PAC that supports an insurgent gubernatorial candidate in Mississippi. The president of End Citizens United, Tiffany Muller, said that Mr Uihlein is one of the most significant fund’s donor in the Republican Party.
The reports that a Russian company bought political ads on Facebook in an attempt to influence the United States presidential election in 2016 is common to many Americans. After the elections, numerous committees were established to investigate and give their findings on the connection between Kremlin and Donald Trump’s campaign. Since then, Robert Mueller, a Special Counsel has been regularly providing evidence to the claims.
The American electoral laws prohibit foreign bodies from contributing to and interfering with the political campaigns. However, implementing the law is difficult. This is because the implementers of the campaign laws on finance are relaxed and not performing their duties as required. Some activists and lawyers also moved to court to oppose laws that bar foreign entities from interfering with the United States campaigns. As a result, a small group of individuals including non-Americans now have a say in the country’s political process. Muller brought to light $100,000 that was used in the digital ad campaign. It is certain that there were other foreign players who interfered with the electoral process apart from Russia.
The loophole in the government that has resulted in these interferences are as a result of the laxity present in all the three arms of the government. The Supreme Court decision in 2010 on the Citizens United versus the Federal Election Commission case provided room for foreign donations which it referred to as “speech”. The ruling allowed corporations, advocacy groups, and labor unions to donate huge sums of money without limit to the campaigns. Money in most occasions corrupts politics since donors spend a lot of money in the elections expecting a favor in return. Without a limit on the amount of money to be donated, bribing politicians becomes easy.
In an effort to restore the condition, the Democrats have set measures to limit political spending. They have established the DISCLOSE Act and the Get Foreign Money out of U.S Elections Act to control the spending. They are also asking the Supreme Court to revert their 2010 ruling. The politicians are being supported by the End Citizens United.