The Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United gave wealthy corporations and special interests the green light to hide behind front groups while they spend unlimited amounts of money influencing our elections. The 2014 election set a new record for political spending, but because Senate Republicans blocked passage of the DISCLOSE Act, we have no idea where much of it came from.
The Federal Election Commission (FEC) has had five years to fix this mess — now they’re finally asking the public for input on how best to improve our disclosure rules and their enforcement.
We have until January 15 to weigh in with comments, so we need you to speak up now.
Here’s a sample comment you can use, but a message in your own words will be even more effective:
We have a right to know to whom elected officials are beholden, but our current system allows many political spenders to hide their true identities. That’s simply unacceptable in a democracy. Please enact new rules to bring dark money political spenders out into the open and disclose the true identities those who bankroll political ads.
In Citizens United, the Supreme Court assumed we would know who is trying to influence our decisions on Election Day – and who is buying attention from our elected officials. But since that decision five years ago, hundreds of millions of dollars from secret sources have been spent in ways that will lead to corruption.
Please update and strengthen the FEC’s disclosure rules to protect our democracy.
We deserve to know who’s influencing our democracy. That shouldn’t be controversial – even the Supreme Court agreed 8-1 in Citizens United that disclosure is necessary for voters to make informed decisions.
But five years later, our airwaves are flooded with ads by groups with opaque names like “Crossroads GPS” – and it’s anyone’s guess who’s really paying for them.