Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Another Horrendous U.S. Supreme Court Decision on Money in Our Politics Looming Large

Common Cause in Wisconsin Reform Update
Tuesday - January 14, 2014

Jay Heck – 608/256-2686

1. "Citizens United - The Sequel" Court Decision May be Rendered This Month
2. Wisconsin State Senate Majority Leader Blocks Bad Campaign Finance Bill
3. Why Political Reform in Wisconsin Will be a Big Election Issue in 2014
4. Mary Lou Munts: 1924-2013

1. In January, 2010 the U.S. Supreme Court handed down one of the most horrific and misguided decisions in its history -- Citizens United v. F.E.C. -- reversing more than 100 years of precedent and settled law and suddenly opening the flood gates to allow unlimited and unregulated (and largely undisclosed) corporate and union treasury money to flow into and undermine our state and federal elections. The Roberts Court is poised to deliver another terrible decision on money in our politics and it could be handed down yet this month. This irresponsible action is the subject of an opinion-editorial by CC/WI director Jay Heck that was published on January 11th in the Wisconsin State Journal.

2. As we reported to you earlier this month, State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) announced that the State Senate would not be considering bad campaign finance legislation (Assembly Bill 225) that CC/WI opposes and that passed in the Wisconsin Assembly late last year. Fitzgerald said the measure lacked sufficient votes in the State Senate to pass. Here is why CC/WI believes AB 225 is doomed and lacks enough support in that chamber.

3. Redistricting Reform emerged as a huge issue in Wisconsin politics in 2013 and that issue, and other political reform issues will "matter" to voters in the 2014 elections perhaps more so than in any election in memory. CC/WI Director Jay Heck will talk about the reasons why the stars are aligning for reform this year (as election issues, if not enactment) at an event in Middleton, Wisconsin on Thursday evening. If you are in the area then, drop by to participate. Here are the details.

4. It is with great sadness that we convey to those of you who may not have known, that Mary Louise Munts -- one of the most accomplished state legislators in Wisconsin's history and the Co-Chair of Common Cause in Wisconsin from 1995 to 2005 -- passed away on December 22nd near Philadelphia, where she had resided for the last eight years. Mary Lou (as we knew her in Wisconsin) was an amazingly energetic, intelligent, engaging, kind and compassionate person who made a strong and lasting impression on everyone who knew her. Her career in the Wisconsin Assembly was almost legendary and is described vividly here.

As Co-Chair of Common Cause in Wisconsin (with current Chair Bill Kraus), Mary Lou helped steer the revival of our organization into becoming the largest and most effective reform advocacy group in the state. We missed her when she left Madison in 2005 to be closer to several of her children, and we join them and her many friends in Wisconsin in missing Mary Lou's active presence in our lives. Hers was truly a life very well lived. Farewell Mary Lou!

Jay Heck, Executive Director
Common Cause in Wisconsin
152 W. Johnson St., Suite 212
Madison, WI  53703

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1 comment:

Jonathan Swift said...

If all organizations, such as unions and corporations and associations were prohibited from using general treasury funds without the consent of the owners of those funds, and required to raise money from the members or shareholders directly for the specific purpose it would seem to fit constitutional requirements.