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The U.S. Supreme Court issues many opinions each year and it is safe to say they all greatly impact the lives of Americans in some way. The Supreme Court’s opinion two years ago in Citizens United v. FEC is by all accounts one that has dramatically changed the landscape of modern political campaigns in America.
Looking back, the League’s commentary on the decision accurately predicted the impact we are now seeing in the 2012 elections – the birth of SuperPACs:
“The Supreme Court has made a tragic mistake. Their decision announced today in Citizens United v. FEC is constitutionally irresponsible and will surely bring about an anti-democratic revolution in how we finance elections in this country. Today, basic pillars of American democracy have been undermined – that elections should not be corrupted by vast corporate wealth and that the voters should be at the center of our democratic system.” (LWVUS, 1/21/10)
SuperPACs are popping up everywhere. In 2010, we caught a glimpse of what was to come in American politics under Citizens United. Now as we sit back and watch the 2012 campaign season begin to unfold, we see that the very integrity of our elections is at stake. And the federal agency that is responsible for regulating money in American politics – the Federal Election Commission (FEC) – is totally dysfunctional. Of the six commissioners at the agency, three of them simply refuse to enforce the law, and five of the six are serving despite the fact that their terms expired some time ago.
Business as usual is not working. It is time to clean house and President Obama is the one that needs to do something about it.
How can you fight back against the big money pouring into the political campaigns this year? Sign the petition on The White House website* urging President Obama to appoint new FEC commissioners. We need at least 25,000 signatures of support by February 10, 2012 in order to get a response from The White House.