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Home / Articles / Editorial / Letters /  Citizens United decision’s chickens come home to roost in Wisconsin
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Sunday, June 10,2012

Citizens United decision’s chickens come home to roost in Wisconsin

To the Editor:

I was truly disheartened by the results of the Wisconsin recall election. Not because I live in Wisconsin — I don't, or not because I know anyone who lives there — I don't. I am saddened because of the message that election is sending out to the United States of America and the World. I always believed that America is a country whose Constitution protected the rights of the majority as well as the rights of the minority. The message being sent around the world is that with enough money you can buy any election.

In January 2010 the Supreme Court ruled in the case, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. President Obama commented on that ruling in his State of the Union Address: "Last week, the Supreme Court reversed a century of law to open the floodgates for special interests — including foreign corporations — to spend without limit in our elections. Well, I don't think American elections should be bankrolled by America's most powerful interests, or worse, by foreign entities." He was correct.

As a result of this ruling, PACs and tax-exempt Super PACs have been established. These PACs and super PACs now have no limits to the amounts of money that can be donated. More concerning to me is that tax-exempt super PACs do not have to disclose where the money is coming from that's collected. Individuals and companies from other countries now can have a major say in our elections. We have no way of finding out who is buying our elections. This is wrong.

Joseph Goebbels was the minister of propaganda under Adolf Hitler. He was very good at his job. He said the following:

"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State."

We now see a flooding of the airways, the Internet and the mail, with lies and half-truths. But if the people hear lies enough times, they will come to believe them. Super PACs have the money the pay for more ads than we have ever seen before regarding our political election times.

No individual will be able to win an election without the support of big money behind him or her. Our elected officials will know that if they vote against the "money's wishes," they will not win another election. They will have to follow the wishes of the money lenders who got them elected — not the people they were elected to represent.

Does the individual voter have the ability to make a difference? I wonder. I will still try.

Lynn M. Smith
Roxbury Drive
Athens

 

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REPLY TO THIS COMMENT

So having unions contribute tens, and hundreds, of millions of dollars for the Left was OK (they spent $52 million in the Wisconsin recall, by the way, largely from mandatory dues that do not consider the political stance of individual members), but having corporations contribute is not? Citizens United merely leveled the field between them.


Where's your support of freedom of choice? Regardless of the wisdom or foolishness of political persuasion by 30-second TV ads, I'd rather be able to listen to both sides and make my own choice, than have government restrain one side of the debate in the interest of a "fairness" that is fundamentally unfair.


The other positive effect of Citizens United has been to undermine the longevity of incumbents: http://www.citizensunited.org/cu-in-the-news.aspx?article=4997. That can't be a bad thing.

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
b

Dean, do you believe what you write, or just lie blatantly? Even right oriented sources say that Walker outspent Barrett. Shapiro/Brietbart say, "Overall, over $63.5 million was spent on the recall effort by various parties. Walker spent about $30 million; Barrett spent about $4 million. Most of the money spent by Walker came from out-of-state sources – The Republican Governors Association spent about $4 million, almost all from out-of-state; the Kochs gave $1 million; the Chamber of Commerce gave $500,000. On the surface, then, it appears that Walker had a tremendous cash advantage.

Not so fast. As it turns out, labor unions spent an additional $21 million on the recall election. When it came to state senate recall elections back in September 2011, Democrats outspent Republicans $23.4 million to $20.5 million."


Your credibility fails in light of the truth. Your exaggerations reduce your statements to mere :topes.

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
b

See, the Brietbart version is bad enough, but then you take it to an extreme.


http://www.theblaze.com/stories/the-blaze-fact-checks-weeping-voter-his-claims-are-not-ready/ Says it was even less, though definitely a conservative leaning source.

 

 

 
 
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