Throughout the many important cases that the Supreme Court has made decisions on and one of the most far-reaching of them involved the case Citizens United v. F.E.C. In judging that corporations, labor unions, and other similar organizations have the same rights to political contributions that private citizens have, the court, in effect, wrested a chunk of democracy out of the people’s hands. This might sound like a broad claim, but because corporations (and the wealthy people who run them) can make unlimited and untracked donations now with the help of Political Action Committees (PACs), they have a much greater influence on getting a candidate elected than the average citizen. This is an unfair advantage for big business.
Fighting against this one-sided influence that permeates Washington at its core is End Citizens United, a grassroots non-profit organization formed in 2015 to fight back for the citizens. In effect, they are the same as any other Political Action Committee in that they can give money to candidates for political campaigns. However, they differ in that they only donate to candidates who pledge to not take special interest money and support campaign finance reform and are funded by private citizens. Under the leadership of Tiffany Muller, End Citizens United has raised close to the $35 million goal for the midterms, and has done it with an average donorship amount of $14! That’s American citizens supporting candidates who will, in turn, support them back, the way it should be.
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To help attune voters to candidates who suck up to special interests, End Citizens United has come up with the “Big Money 20” list of the worst offenders in Washington. These are politicians that long ago started taking money from special interest groups like big tobacco, big oil, big pharma, etc. and never looked back. They willfully support and help maintain a corruption that strikes at the very heart of democracy.
On the Big Money 20 list is former presidential candidate Ted Cruz. Cruz is a very vocal proponent of the Citizens United decision as well as keeping big money in government. He is a politician that has led his whole career by the example of selling their votes to the highest bidder, and has even been quoted saying “money absolutely can be speech.” The mindset of him and his ilk are the problems, but luckily there are candidates like Beto O’Rourke who are trying to change things. Beto is campaigning for Cruz’s seat in the midterms and refuses to take special interest money to do so.
Check more about End Citizens United: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnpLmnN_7TxPdpGODs-JXxg