On January 21st, 2010 the United States Supreme Court decided Citizens United V. F.E.C by a 5-4 decision. The Court held that the free speech clause of the first amendment prevents the government from restricting political expenditures by corporations and other associations. Citizens United v. F.E.C. revolutionized the landscape of American elections. It established the legal precedent for the idea that “Corporations are people” with the same rights as citizens, opening the door for special interests to spend unlimited amounts of money in American elections.
On March 1st, 2015 the people decided to fight back by forming End Citizens United; a grassroots Political Action Committee dedicated to reforming our campaign finance system. End Citizens United is working toward this goal by electing pro-reform candidates, raising awareness to the corrosive nature of money in politics, and using the ballot referendum process to pass pro-reform laws at the state level.
Campaign finance advocates should find hope in polling. Campaign finance reform has become a key talking point and a hot-button issue among voters. Surveys show Americans overwhelmingly support groups pushing for policies that would create public financing or limit corporate money in politics. A recent study shows that almost 90% of Americans believe that the influence of special interests negatively effects government. Research conducted by End Citizens United itself reported that two out of every three voters believe the amount of money in politics affects peoples daily lives.
Having endorsed 87 candidates to date, End Citizens United is supporting a wide array of pro-reform candidates. From political heavyweights such as Elizabeth Warren and Nancy Pelosi to Randy Brice, Speaker Paul Ryan’s Democratic challenger, End Citizens united hopes to usher in leaders that will end the rigged system and reform our campaign finance laws.
End Citizens United will connect these campaigns with local grassroots supporters at the state and district level. End Citizens United has also built a 380,000 small-dollar national donor network with the hopes of being able to raise massive amounts of money to help fight corporate donations. This cycle, End Citizens United has already raised more than $3 million for its endorsed candidate from thousands of small-dollar grassroots donors. End Citizens United estimates project that they will raise $35million for the 2018 cycle, with an average donation of $14. For more info about us: https://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/lookup2.php?strID=C00573261 click here.
Citizens United destroyed a century’s worth of legal precedent aimed at reducing the amount of corruption in our electoral system. The people, however, are taking a stand to reject corporate Super PAC money and make sure that politicians are accountable to their constituents rather than special interests. Overturning Citizens United would mean that anyone could run for office, no longer limited by monetary or financial constraints. It would give us an electoral system that more fairly and accurately represents us, the people.