Posted on January 21, 2016
#DemocracyAwakening: Overturn Citizens United
Six years ago today, the Supreme Court unleashed a number of assaults on our democracy with its disastrous Citizens United decision: The rise of Super PACs, the idea that corporations are people and money equals speech, and a flood of secret and untraceable “dark money” in our elections.
That’s why over 100 progressive, civil rights, and social justice organizations have joined together this year to form a coalition that will push for fundamental reforms in both voting rights and campaign finance as part of a year-long Democracy Awakening.
CREDO is supporting the efforts of these groups, which include the NAACP, Public Citizen, MoveOn.org, and the National Organization for Women, by putting Congress on notice right now that fixing our democracy will be a top priority for 2016. And we’re starting by demanding that 2016 is the year Congress overturns Citizens United.
As a result of the Citizens United ruling, the 2014 election was the most expensive midterm in American history. Armed with a flood of money from ultra-wealthy donors and corporations, radical right-wing extremists swept Senate and House races, securing Republican control of both houses of Congress.
We can’t afford to let future elections be a repeat of what happened in 2014. But the 2016 election is already shaping up to shatter past records.
In the 2012 election, more than $300 million in secret money was spent by billionaires and special interests hiding their identity. The Center for Responsive Politics has found there’s been 10 times as much dark money so far in the 2016 election compared to the same point in the 2012 cycle.
Citizens United poses an existential threat to our democracy, and we can’t let this election pass by without making it a central, defining issue. Let’s make 2016’s Democracy Awakening a major force in this year’s election by putting Congress on notice right now.