Amend 2012 Ballot Victories in San Francisco and Richmond!

As a part of our national Amend 2012 campaign, Common Cause California has been rallying support for a ballot measure that would instruct legislators to ratify a constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United, and last Tuesday, we had a resounding success! We are proud to say that thanks to the great work of our California Common Cause staff, especially Derek Cressman, our legislator Bob Wieckowski and others, Governor Brown, coalition partners and voters we have delivered AJR22, local resolutions to amend the constitution across the state and TWO ballot measures using voter instruction in San Francisco and Richmond!

Our strategy was to find a local elected official to pass a resolution to put the measures on their ballot. In San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos led the charge. In Richmond former Vice Chair of California Common Cause and Vice Mayor Jim Rogers led the charge. I worked with both of Avalos and Rogers throughout all the processes we needed to complete to ensure each measure got on the ballot. We are very grateful to both of them for their leadership and passion to reverse Citizens United.

Indeed, it takes a coalition of folks to pass a ballot measure. Thanks to our very own Nikki Willoughby we put up websites on each measure. Then with the help of my intern William Sink, we put up Facebook pages; sent out hundreds of emails to get the word out; asked everyone we could think of to endorse the measures; contacted the media to cover us and; pushed to get our local papers to recommend a YES Vote!

And we had fun! More then 1,000 people turned out to support the Prop G and speak their mind by spelling “Dump Citizens United” out with their bodies on the San Francisco Ocean Beach shoreline in what Laura Flanders deemed Freedom of the Beach! The event was organized by a taxi-cab driver in collaboration with the Other 98% and supported by Common Cause, CREDO Action, Code Pink, Courage Campaign, Free Speech for People, Move to Amend, Public Citizen, Ruckus Society, unPAC.org and others.

In the end we won in San Francisco with 83% of the vote and in Richmond with 72% of the vote. Many thanks to everyone who voted to ensure we can have government by, of and for the people. Yes, together we can Dump Citizens United. I hope to see hundreds of local ballot measure next year with the same success!

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About Helen Grieco

Helen Grieco is an organizer in Northern California for Common Cause.

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