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A common-sense way to curtail the power of big money in elections

It has become clear that big money spending by corporations in elections is a problem. Since the outcome of Citizens United campaign spending has reached an all-time high, the top thirty-two Super PAC donors in the 2012 election gave as much as President Obama and Mitt Romney raised from all of their small donors combined—that’s at least 3.7 million people giving less than $200 whose voices were overpowered by just thirty-two megadonors.

For too long, unaccountable special interests have had too much influence in our elections by virtue of the money they can spend. Campaign finance reform is important, in order to restrict campaign spending in elections. As bad as the problem has been historically, the new rules post–Citizens United has only made things worse, with often-unknown spenders breaking records every election cycle—2014 is expected to be no exception.

The Supreme Court, unfortunately, seems bent not on fixing this problem, but on making it worse. While winning a constitutional amendment to reclaim our democracy for ordinary citizens won’t be easy, it’s a fight worth having. And with sixteen states and over 500 communities across the country already on record as calling for an amendment, the momentum for victory is building. The Senate should stand up for their constituents, not special interests.

Leslie Card

Washington, DC

Jul 9 2014 - 9:52am

Of billionaires and mobsters

Joseph “Joe the Barber” Barbara also understood that important men need to be able to meet in private from time to time. In 1957, Joe arranged for his colleagues in organized crime to meet at his home in Apalachin, New York. Unfortunately for the mobsters in attendance, law enforcement officials became suspicious and the country woke up to pictures of mobsters in suits fleeing into the woods.

John Kirsch

Mazatlan, MEXICO

Jun 18 2014 - 3:42pm

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