Advocates seek new avenues for corporate accountability
Today the Federal Election Commission (FEC) is being called in to a hearing in the Elections subcommittee of the House Administration committee.
Anyone attending will hear the commissioners speak to their performance. However, it is hard to imagine how their statements can be anything but a whitewash. The agency is currently falling desperately short in its mission (PDF) to enforce the campaign finance laws on the books, and has been unable to promulgate new rules to react to the landmark case Citizens United vs. FEC. For years, a sharply partisan split between the commissioners has largely prevented the agency from fulfilling its directive.
With a gaping hole left by a deadlocked FEC, advocates are now looking to other remedies for dealing with the pervasive problem of secretive outside and corporate spending, highlighted in the 2010 cycle (which is sure to continue in 2012).
One avenue that the courts left open following the Citizens United ruling is increased disclosure and corporate accountability.
In 2010, national public interest groups began working together in the Corporate Reform Coalition (CRC). The organization is comprised of more than 70 members, ranging from corporate governance and good government groups, to academics and investors, to environmental activists, and is working to limit the impact of Citizens United by exposing corporate influence in our elections and bringing new accountability to corporate behavior.
The coalition is working on doing this through many avenues, and different parts of the group are working to press the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to promulgate rules on corporate political spending, advocating for Congress to pass legislation giving shareholders a voice in how their companies spend money in politics and targeting companies directly.
To shine the spotlight on companies, within a few weeks CRC will be kicking off a corporate pledge to urge corporations to adopt policies to refrain from political spending. This campaign will send a clear message to companies that the public will think twice about supporting a business that engages in political spending.
Whether a company refrains from political spending voluntarily, the SEC requires increased disclosure of political spending, or shareholders are given the right by Congress to voice their opinion on their corporation’s spending, one thing is clear – the enforcement void created by the FEC must be addressed with strong corporate accountability.
Take Action: Urge Congress to support the solutions to Citizens United v. FEC.
Lisa Gilbert is the Deputy Director of Public Citizen’s Congress Watch Division
November 3, 2011 @ 10:09 am
The Wall Street Robber Baron and Corporate America have the Washington Politicians from Congress to the White House on the Take. Until we clean them out, America will continue its down hill spiral to collapse.
November 3, 2011 @ 3:39 pm
We must have the people vote on the laws not corporate puppets. They will always find a way to rip us off.
Passing laws is what they did before Reagan and all the laws got pulled later. Rich thiefs are voting on them.
Go to webpage___http://www.nucow.com/JYC.htm___and ignore the radio comments, but please read entire page, to see just some of the problems and how to really achieve a true democracy today.
WE NEED TO CHANGE THE SYSTEM NOT JUST SOME MORE LAWS…….
It will no longer matter, how much money they get to be elected, since they do not vote, hence only average honest people, not rich will want the job !!
November 3, 2011 @ 8:16 pm
I agree about members on Wall Street. Are they robbers? YES, they are. Why don’t teach us more about socialism finally and may be even rebuild Congress in different ways more Liberal…
November 3, 2011 @ 10:36 am
We should stop the buying of the White House buy the greedy multinational, the financial system and the special interest. All elections should be fund by every American by weekly contribution of five Dollars deduction from their pay check. This money should be use for television time and exposure of the candidates political platform.
“Advocates Seek New Avenues for Corporate Accountability” | Election Law Blog
November 3, 2011 @ 11:12 am
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November 3, 2011 @ 11:19 am
“Today the Federal Election Commission (FEC) is being called in to a hearing in the Elections subcommittee of the House Administration committee.” — And what does that mean with the current House? It means the GOP House is looking for ways to advance its anti-democracy agenda, accuse the FEC of being defective, needing to cut its funding so it cannot function, and ways to eliminate the “sharply partisan split between the commissioners” and shift the FEC to be a lap-dog for corporations and the GOP. Anyone who believes this to be “extremist fear mongering” isn’t paying attention to the action of the GOP across the country. Walker in WI along with other red states trying to eliminate unions as a polical counterbalance to corporations. Walker trying to disenfranchise large blocks of traditionally progressive voters. Walker trying to eliminate recall petititions by requiring signatures to be notorized. AZ GOP legislature impeaching an INDEPEDENT redistricting commission that had the nerve to actually try and create competitive districts in AZ to reflect the 1/3 of the AZ population that is independent rather than rubberstamping more GOP-assured districts. The only people who do not thing the GOP is on an anti-democracy rampage are ones who are not paying attention.
November 3, 2011 @ 1:32 pm
F & F….you are SO right
Advocates seek new avenues for corporate accountability | Corporate Reform Coalition
November 3, 2011 @ 11:48 am
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November 4, 2011 @ 12:00 pm
We must get rid of the Electoral College and have a one person, one vote system carefully monitored. We mut educate the people against the huge rightwing, corporate propaganda machine, and pass the amendement to UNDO Citizens United Versus The Federal Elections Commission. The commission must be barred from having partisans on it’s board. The profit motive must be driven out of our political institutions, if we want to good of the people and the planet to come FIRST, as it should in a true democracy, because we now live in an oligarchy of the multinational corporate state, and there are ONLY a FEW VESTIGES of democracy left to us, like the non-profit orgs. such as Public Citizens, Common Cause, GreenPeace, the Sierra Club, 350.org and such. And, as for the media, we have THE NATION, THE PROGRESSIVE, AMY GOODMAN and DEMOCRACY NOW, ALTERNET, and PUBLIC CITIZENS NEWSLETTER and WEBSITE. Boycott the lying media and let them know you’re turning them OFF with their so called “balanced” reporter and commentary that gives too much time to lies on the right. It’s like giving Hitler equal time to lie. We DO NOT need equal time for Karl Rove’s propaganda machine and the Koch Bros. and Clarence Thomas, etc.
November 5, 2011 @ 12:35 am
NOT OCCUPY, WE WILL RETAKE OUR COUNTRY AND CHANGE THE UNITED CORPORATIONS OF AMERICA BACK TO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA