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The Pennsylvania Progressive

Sestak Seeks to Undo Citizens United Decision

by: John Morgan

Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 13:59:50 PM EST

Congressman Joe Sestak introduced legislation to day which would unravel the recent shocking Supreme Court decision in Citizens United.  Saying "I thoroughly disagreed with the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision because it gives the same status to corporations as to individual citizens in society by removing decades-old precedents that protected the electoral process from the influence of money. Corporations are not equal members of society as an individual citizen, and I agree with Justice Stevens, who authored the case's dissent, that the ruling could undermine the integrity of our Nation's elected institutions."

The Sestak bill would impose the following restrictions:

It would require annual voting by shareholders of a corporation if:

   * The total campaign spending for the year would be over $8,000 for companies with under 100 employees.
   * The total campaign spending for the year would be over $20,000 for companies with over 100 employees.

The bill also requires that if a corporation makes such a disbursement without shareholder approval, each responsible officer and director of the corporation will be personally liable for the amount of the unauthorized expenditure.

John Morgan :: Sestak Seeks to Undo Citizens United Decision
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Sestak seeks to undue court decision (0.00 / 0)
I wonder if Sestak could introduce something similar for the unions which contribute money of their members to candidates that they don't endorse.  There should be the same rule applied to unions that apply to corporations.

The unions will never (0.00 / 0)
have the same amount of money as corporations.  It isn't unions undermining democracy but corporations.  We need more union involvement, not less.

Follow me on Twitter:  JohnPMorgan

[ Parent ]
campaign contributions (0.00 / 0)
John, you said: "The unions will never have the same amount of money as corporations.  It isn't unions undermining democracy but corporations.  We need more union involvement, not less."

You are very mis-informed.  In the 2008 election cycle, the Pennsylvania State Education Association contributed over 2 MILLION dollars to political campaigns.  The PA Trial Lawyers Association contributed almost 2 MILLION as well.  

If YOU don't want to undermine democracy, then you must apply the rules consistently and equally to all special interest groups.  As a teacher, I wish I had an opportunity to vote for where my money was going, just as  Sestak wants to do for the shareholders of coorporations.

The difference between corporations and unions?  Most corporations provide products or services that benefit society; unions only advocate for a particular group of people without producing anything; they are often counterproductive, in the long run working against those they are supposed to protect and serve as well as the public interest.

[ Parent ]
LOL, you think unions (0.00 / 0)
spent a smuch money as corporate America?

Earth to cecilcitizen!

Follow me on Twitter:  JohnPMorgan

[ Parent ]
Here's proof (0.00 / 0)
Open Secrets has done a study from 2007-2008.  Business contributions totaled $1,964,870, 224 versus union contributions of $74,773,481.  Read it and weep.  

Follow me on Twitter:  JohnPMorgan

[ Parent ]
Supreme Court Ruling (0.00 / 0)
Since the Supreme Court made the ruling is this not now SETTLED LAW?  Why would a legislator seek to undue a ruling by the Court which is settled law?
As a member of a union, the members are never asked who they want the union to support.  That is not democratic involvement.  The elitist at the top (union) decide where the money goes!  These same union leaders have probably never done a hard days work in their lives.  They collect their money off the sweat of the workers who at times are forced to give them money (union dues).

That isn't what "settled law" means n/t (0.00 / 0)

Follow me on Twitter:  JohnPMorgan

[ Parent ]
Dancer: No, it's not settled law. (0.00 / 0)
Settled law is a decision made by the Supreme Court (or a lower court undisturbed by a higher court) which is not changed for a long period of time and typically cited as precedent by courts in other cases over the years. Much too soon to consider Citizens United as settled law. In fact, it is close to the opposite for three reasons.

First, it is fresh off the presses and has not been tested by time or other decisions. Second, it reversed decades of what some legal scholars thought was settled law to the contrary. Third, it was a 5 to 4 decision and remains subject to reversal by the Supreme Court with a single membership change on the court. If anything, it is unsettled law.

Above all, our constitution, which provides for checks and balances, allows Congress to pass legislation reversing the effect of Supreme Court decisions which do not affect constitutional rights. The latter still can be reversed, but a constitutional amendment is required.  

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