Two years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court gave business corporations and other groups the green light for unlimited independent campaign spending. That decision in the Citizens United case, says the AFL-CIO Executive Council, has “undermined democracy” and:
further tilted the playing field in favor of the 1% and against the 99%, whose voices are being drowned out by excessive spending and influence by corporations and the wealthy.
In a statement at its annual winter meeting in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., the council called for Citizens United to be overturned.
The Citizens United ruling has opened the floodgates to massive spending by corporations and even more so by wealthy donors. They are pouring money into our electoral system and threaten to drown out the voices of hard-working Americans. Common-sense restrictions on their spending are needed, along with robust disclosure of their contributions and expenditures—including their contributions to organizations engaged in electoral activity.
The council also called for public financing of campaigns, limitations on individual contributions to candidates and parties and public disclosure of political expenditures. In addition, the council called for measures “to enable citizens to vote more easily.”
We oppose voter identification and similar measures that are aimed at seizing partisan advantage through disenfranchisement. And, we oppose misleadingly labeled “paycheck protection” measures that would exacerbate inequality by hampering union political activity while leaving corporate and rich individuals’ political spending unimpeded.
Click here for the full statement.