MoneyOutVotersInWI is a coalition of Wisconsin groups fighting the corrosive effects that unlimited campaign cash has on our political system. Over 18,000 Wisconsin citizens have already added their names to this petition, demanding that the Wisconsin Legislature place an Advisory Referendum on the ballot in Wisconsin directing the Congress to amend the U.S. Constitution to end the notions that money is speech and corporations have the same rights as human beings.
The Money Out Voters In WI press conference is set for Wednesday, July 24th at 10:30am at the State Capitol.
If you can make it, please come – it’s important to show the reporters who attend that this has lots of support! We will also need people to stand behind the speakers holding signs, so if you want to do this be sure to come dressed appropriately.
This is the press conference to announce the resolution being introduced by Chris Taylor in the Assembly and Dave Hansen in the State Senate, which if passed would put the following language on the statewide ballot for November 2014:
The U.S. Supreme Court’s decisions in Citizens United and related cases allow unlimited spending to influence local, state, and federal elections. To allow all Americans to have an equal say in our democracy, shall Wisconsin’s congressional delegation support, and the Wisconsin legislature ratify, an amendment to the U.S. Constitution stating:
1. Only human beings—not corporations, unions, nonprofit organizations, or similar associations—are endowed with constitutional rights, and
2. Money is not speech, and therefore limiting political contributions and spending is not equivalent to restricting political speech.
By the way, one of the speakers will be James Hartwick from the Rock River MTA Affiliate. We are still lining up the other speakers.
More from Chris Taylor’s Office:
The 2010 United States Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC overturned 100 years of precedent by legalizing unlimited corporate involvement in elections. This ruling now allows corporations to be treated like “persons” in campaigns, thus giving more power to large, faceless entities, and undermining Wisconsin’s proud progressive tradition of open and honest government.
Thanks in large part to Citizens United opening the floodgates to unlimited spending, the last election cycle cost $5.2 billion, much of which came in massive, untraceable donations from a few billionaires and giant corporations. In Wisconsin’s House and Senate races, $32 million was spent by outside interest groups, and nearly 36 percent of that total was completely untraceable.
The vast majority of Americans oppose the Citizens United ruling. A recent AP / GfK study showed that 83 percent of Americans — including 81 percent of Republicans, 78 percent of Independents and 85 percent of Democrats — want limits on the amount of money corporations, unions and other organizations can spend to influence elections. Over 18,000 Wisconsinites have signed a petition calling for a citizen’s vote on putting Wisconsin on record against Citizens United. Thirty-two organizations from around the state have formed a coalition calling for a statewide referendum.
The passage of LRB−1457/5 would create an advisory referendum that would appear on the November 2014 ballot. The referendum would give the public the opportunity to share their opinion on this issue with their elected officials. If the proposed ballot initiative passes, Wisconsin would join 16 states that have already gone on record for a constitutional amendment to limit election spending.
Here is the 2013 Assembly Joint Resolution