California Fights Back Against Citizens United
This morning in Sacramento, the California State Assembly approved Assembly Joint Resolution 22, a resolution urging Congress to amend the United States Constitution to overturn the Citizens United v. FEC Supreme Court ruling that has allowed unchecked special interests money to drown out the voices of voters.
After a thorough debate, the State Assembly approved the resolution 48-22. A vote in the State Senate is expected within a few weeks. With this victory, the country’s most populous state has jumped into the nationwide fight against the special interest takeover of our elections.
“California has taken a big step in the right direction and joined the chorus of voters calling for Citizens United to be overturned,” said Derek Cressman, Director of Common Cause’s Campaign to Reverse Citizens United (amend2012.org), “Congress needs to know that everyday Americans are fed up and demanding change.”
“This ruling has set off a financial arms race among wealthy special interests that threatens to drown out the voice of middle class Americans in our elections,” said Assembly Member Bob Wieckowski, one of the authors of AJR 22. “At a time when trust in our government is low and the income gap between rich and poor is growing, the Supreme Court has tilted the playing field more in favor of the rich and powerful. Congress has a democratic duty to restore sanity to our electoral process.”
“A lot of us believe the Supreme Court ruling has thrown us out of balance,” said Assembly Member Michael Allen, another author of AJR 22. “It’s a system that’s out of whack, and for democracy to function well, everybody needs a voice. But the notion of ‘one person, one vote’ is very heavily distorted when corporations are given a microphone and allowed to drown out individual voices.”