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Former Justices Stevens & O'Connor Reject 'Citizens United' Ruling

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    A recent analysis of the effects of Citizens United found that $132.5 million, about 15 percent of all federal political spending in the recent election cycle, was channeled by anonymous groups or unlimited donations authorized by the Supreme Court's ruling.
    Former Supreme Court Justices John Paul Stevens and Sandra Day O'Connor recently appeared to come to a similar conclusion about the majority decision reached by their former colleagues in Citizens United vs. Federal Elections Committee earlier this year: it was a "mistake."
    Stevens, who stood on the dissenting side of Citizens United, characterized the final decision in the case as a failure that he would like to see readdressed:
    Here’s a dialogue between Steven and former Chief Justice Sandra Day O’Connor:
    Sandra: “I suppose the court has had occasion to change its view on certain issues over a period of years. Do you see any on the horizon that you think the court might well reexamine as things go on?
    John Paul: “I dissented in a lot of cases, and I'd like the court to reexamine them all. I don't expect them to, but I think they made a serious mistake in the Citizens United campaign-finance case, in which they overruled the portion of an opinion you and I jointly authored on the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law. And I think you might share my view.
    Sandra: “I notice that myself, and when I am asked about it, I often say, "Well, the court overruled part of what I wrote." And leave it there. It is a source of concern today, the extent of campaign contributions and whether corporations and unions must be held to the same standard as an individual. These are tough issues for the nation and the court.

    Unquote, The Citizens United ruling has brought a flood of shadowy, corporate money into our political process. It’s an attack on our democracy. In a system where one person, one vote is supposed to be the rule, huge corporations are having an outsized influence. Now, a group of Democratic senators has introduced a constitutional amendment to limit corporate influence in elections.
    Claire McCaskill - Special interests are trying to buy our elections with anonymously funded attack ads. Thanks to the Citizens United decision, $7.6 million has been spent slandering my record.
    We need the DISCLOSE Act to force these faceless billionaires to reveal their political funding -- and end unlimited special-interest influence. Americans deserve to know the funders behind the TV ads flooding our airwaves.
    On July 16, Republican senators voted along party lines against transparency in campaign funding.
    http://stewartacuff.com/citizens-united-supreme-court-ruling-undermines-democra...

    "Nothing destroy a hard steel but by its own rust"   I agree with both O'Connor and Stevens.  The court need to re-address this stupid Citizens United.  America is not for sale; not to the highest bidder, not to anybody, not to China, and surely not to Mitt Romney and his fellow billionaires behind him. This Election has now become an Auction.  We, the "YOU PEOPLE" has lost the bargaining power of our VOTES because the bargaining power is now in the hands of the the rich and the super rich and of those other entities (Foreign)  vying to own USA.  Citizens United is the RUST that would destroy hard steel America along with the help of the GOP and itsTea Party.   Your take.
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    Sabrina --

    Yes we need both...a constitutional amendment to overturn the SCOTUS Citizen's United ruling, and we need passage of the DISCLOSE ACT.

    The Disclose Act was brought up for a vote twice in the last two years and failed both times by a Republican filibuster in the Senate.  On September 23, 2010 the Disclose Act fell one vote short of the Republican filibuster threshold of 60 (59 voted for...39 opposed).  The 39 opposed win.

    On July 16, 2012 as you noted, the Democrats in the Senate tried again to pass the Disclose Act but again the Republicans filibustered it.  This time the Senate vote was 51 for...44 against.  The 44 against win.

    Sen. Bernie Sanders has proposed a constitutional amendment that would overturn the Supreme Court decision in a case called Citizens United vs. FEC. 

    The Saving American Democracy Amendment states that:

        Corporations are not persons with constitutional rights equal to real people.
        Corporations are subject to regulation by the people.
        Corporations may not make campaign contributions or any election expenditures.
        Congress and states have the power to regulate campaign finances.


    A note at his website states: "Under Senate rules covering communications, petitions and polls may not be conducted during a period of 60 days before the August 28 primary election in Vermont and 60 days before the November 6 general election. We look forward to bringing them back in the fall."

    Sign his petition at his website after the November 6th election.
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    On the topic:  Former Justices Stevens & O'Connor Reject 'Citizens United' Ruling
    Schmidt - I ask my kid to send me the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law authored by JP Stevens and also what Sandra Day O'Connor has to say about it.  This was a joint dissent for the both of them.  I sure want to read what this is all about.
    Talking about Bernie Sanders, co-incidentally, my kid said that she endeavor to meet with Mr. Sanders. I ask why, and she politely decline to say.  I know this kid, she has something in her mind that is bothering her.  She also said she wants to meet with Elizabeth Warren. Uhmmmm, I just have to wait and see what this is all about.
    Both my kids are not coming home this election time.  They already said they would take off from their jobs come September until the election is over to work on the Obama/Biden re-election.  They both live in NY but they go home every week end at our Brookline (Boston) home.  They said they will do what they have done the last election but not in California, it will be in MA & NY.  We are OK with that.  My oldest is employed by the government, she is a classified employee of one of the Cabinet Department.  She don't talk much about her job because she has government clearance. She and I was talking about the Citizens United not too long ago, all she said to me was quote, "this is the most  uncomprehensible  decision this court has ever made and I don't go for it."   Unquote, she does not aspire to be in any political scene, although I would honestly tell you that this kid is very very influential when it comes to people.  She can convince the Eskimo to buy ice from her (smile) our way of saying she got an army of people behind her. 
    I believe that what you said about the statement on the The Saving American Democracy Amendment
    "Corporations are not persons with constitutional rights equal to real people.
    Corporations are subject to regulation by the people.
    Corporations may not make campaign contributions or any election expenditures.
    Congress and states have the power to regulate campaign finances" 
    were the same dissenting argument of Stevens & O'Conner on that McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law,  that is why I am curious what this argument is about.   If you can research further and find something about this before my kid can give me an answer, I'd appreciate you giving the Link.  Many thanks.
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    We are the most corrupt country on the planet. Simply because here it is legal.
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    sabrina said:

    "America is not for sale; not to the highest bidder, not to anybody..."

    The problem is that Americas politicians ARE for sale.

    And MOST of them will sell out, and HAVE sold out to the highest bidders.

    Not just the Republicans.  Not just the Democrats.  Nearly ALL of them.

    Special interests/big MONEY absolutely OWNS them.

    And some people wonder why Congress can't get anything done...

    Wake up and smell the MONEY.

    And woven is right when he says "here it is legal"

    But, it is still much worse in some other countries.
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    fenway Wrote: sabrina said:

    "America is not for sale; not to the highest bidder, not to anybody..."

    The problem is that Americas politicians ARE for sale.

    And MOST of them will sell out, and HAVE sold out to the highest bidders.

    Not just the Republicans.  Not just the Democrats.  Nearly ALL of them.

    Special interests/big MONEY absolutely OWNS them.

    And some people wonder why Congress can't get anything done...

    Wake up and smell the MONEY.

    And woven is right when he says "here it is legal"

    But, it is still much worse in some other countries.

    FENWAY,,,,,, CORRECTION.....where you say Sabrina said:  In the first line of your comment quote, "America is not for sale; not to the highest bidder, not to anybody..."  I would admit is mine to own verbatim.
    But your succeeding lines, beginning with ....."The problem is......."   and ending with ...."And woven is is right..."   is ALL YOURS TO KEEP.  Those were your statements, NOT MINE.
    Please make yourself clear when commenting or quoting.....thank you.
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
        
    sabrina,

    You're welcome.

    I thought you were familiar with quotation marks and how and why they are used.

    "America is not for sale..."

    You used those words in your post, I repeated them in quotation marks.

    It is unfortunate that you confused my meaning.

    My main point is that America may not be for sale (as you said)  but our politicians certainly are for sale.

    Is that clearer?
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    sabrina05 Wrote: On the topic:  Former Justices Stevens & O'Connor Reject 'Citizens United' Ruling
    Schmidt - I ask my kid to send me the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law authored by JP Stevens and also what Sandra Day O'Connor has to say about it.  This was a joint dissent for the both of them.  I sure want to read what this is all about.
    Talking about Bernie Sanders, co-incidentally, my kid said that she endeavor to meet with Mr. Sanders. I ask why, and she politely decline to say.  I know this kid, she has something in her mind that is bothering her.  She also said she wants to meet with Elizabeth Warren. Uhmmmm, I just have to wait and see what this is all about.
    Both my kids are not coming home this election time.  They already said they would take off from their jobs come September until the election is over to work on the Obama/Biden re-election.  They both live in NY but they go home every week end at our Brookline (Boston) home.  They said they will do what they have done the last election but not in California, it will be in MA & NY.  We are OK with that.  My oldest is employed by the government, she is a classified employee of one of the Cabinet Department.  She don't talk much about her job because she has government clearance. She and I was talking about the Citizens United not too long ago, all she said to me was quote, "this is the most  uncomprehensible  decision this court has ever made and I don't go for it."   Unquote, she does not aspire to be in any political scene, although I would honestly tell you that this kid is very very influential when it comes to people.  She can convince the Eskimo to buy ice from her (smile) our way of saying she got an army of people behind her. 
    I believe that what you said about the statement on the The Saving American Democracy Amendment
    "Corporations are not persons with constitutional rights equal to real people.
    Corporations are subject to regulation by the people.
    Corporations may not make campaign contributions or any election expenditures.
    Congress and states have the power to regulate campaign finances" 
    were the same dissenting argument of Stevens & O'Conner on that McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law,  that is why I am curious what this argument is about.   If you can research further and find something about this before my kid can give me an answer, I'd appreciate you giving the Link.  Many thanks.


    Sabrina -- I did a quick look and didn't find the full dissent that you want. However, here's a link to a CFIF article on the subject,

    McCain-Feingold's High Court Opening Act

    I'll look again in the morning when I have more time.
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    Schmidt Wrote:
    sabrina05 Wrote: On the topic:  Former Justices Stevens & O'Connor Reject 'Citizens United' Ruling
    Schmidt - I ask my kid to send me the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law authored by JP Stevens and also what Sandra Day O'Connor has to say about it.  This was a joint dissent for the both of them.  I sure want to read what this is all about.

    I believe that what you said about the statement on the The Saving American Democracy Amendment
    "Corporations are not persons with constitutional rights equal to real people.
    Corporations are subject to regulation by the people.
    Corporations may not make campaign contributions or any election expenditures.
    Congress and states have the power to regulate campaign finances" 
    were the same dissenting argument of Stevens & O'Conner on that McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law,  that is why I am curious what this argument is about.   If you can research further and find something about this before my kid can give me an answer, I'd appreciate you giving the Link.  Many thanks.


    Sabrina -- I did a quick look and didn't find the full dissent that you want. However, here's a link to a CFIF article on the subject,

    McCain-Feingold's High Court Opening Act

    I'll look again in the morning when I have more time.

    Many thanks again Schmidt for the effort you put into this one.  I am beginning to fully understand how it came about that Citizens United vs. Federal Elections Committee won this case.  It's funny with Romney saying quote, "CORPORATION IS PEOPLE/A PERSON,  MY FRIEND", unquote, so this is where that line originated.  Did Mitt Romney quoted this line in his campaign after Citizens United was upheld by the High Court? I will need first to see the case on Beaumont -vs-Federal Elections Committee because this is where the McCain-Feingold Law was put in place and Citizens United challenge this law....and won.  It's becoming clearer and clearer to me now how Citizens United won this case.  From the summation of the argument on that Beaumont Case, Scalia & Kennedy were already mulling what defense they will use in favor of Citizens United and because the Court is mainly populated by the Republican appointee, the rest went along with Scalia & Kennedy.  The dissent of JP Stevens & O'Connor was on that Beaumont case against Beaumont in favor of the Federal Election Committee for which the Committee won that case, hence the McCain-Feingold Law came into being.  Interesting.  As information I would like to see the Beaumont case and the dissent of JP Stevens and O'Connor upon that case.  Oh boy!  at least I now have a full understanding of this Citizens United Ruling.  "CORPORATION IS A PERSON" the core essence of the Court. 
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    Schmidt - McCain-Feingold Law was passed by Congress.  This law was used by JP Stevens & O'Connor on their dissent in favor of the Federal Elections Committee on the Beaumont -vs- Federal Election Committee case, wherefore the Committee won the case.  But this is the same Law (McCain-Feingold Law) that was challenged by Citizens United in the case against the Federal Election Committee and the dissent was authored by Scalia and Kennedy for which the other Republican Appointee join them in their dissent making it possible for the Citizens United to win the case.....First Amendment argument,  Corporation are people and/or a person and are entitled to the same rights as individuals.
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    Sabrina -- Thanks, I have a lot to catch up with the nuances of the various cases.  It can be confusing.

    Here's a link to Justice Stevens dissent in CITIZENS UNITED v. FEDERAL ELECTION COMM’N ( No. 08-205 )

    I haven't read it yet.  It's looong.

    More later.
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    A few more links:

    Huffington Post, Citizens United Attacks From Justice Stevens Continue, May 30, 2012

    Transcript of Justice Stevens speech at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service, May 30, 2012

    Slate, The Once-and-for-All Solution to Our Campaign Finance Problems, June 13, 2012
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    Schmidt Wrote: Sabrina -- Thanks, I have a lot to catch up with the nuances of the various cases.  It can be confusing.

    Here's a link to Justice Stevens dissent in CITIZENS UNITED v. FEDERAL ELECTION COMM’N ( No. 08-205 )

    I haven't read it yet.  It's looong.

    More later.

    Schmidt.....you are so sweet....thanks a million. I did not sleep half of the night last night reading everything pertaining to this darn Citizens United.  I need to read on this and the reason being is, I don't want to look stupid with my kid.  I ask her something and I know she'd expect that I did my homework too.  She gets impatient with someone who they are talking to and don't know dilly what they are talking about.  :)  I tell you, I am getting back what I have discipline them with when they were growing up.....read...read...& read. 
    I was for Hilary before I was for Obama.  They did not tell me about Obama, they just dump all them books of Obama on my face and told me to start reading and go back to them and talk Obama.  Until then they refuse to talk Obama with me.  :)
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    Schmidt Wrote: A few more links:

    Huffington Post, Citizens United Attacks From Justice Stevens Continue, May 30, 2012

    Transcript of Justice Stevens speech at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service, May 30, 2012

    Slate, The Once-and-for-All Solution to Our Campaign Finance Problems, June 13, 2012

    Schmidt - I could not thank you enough...gees! this is homework for me.  -Sabrina
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    One more:

    Federal Election Comm'n v. Beaumont - 539 U.S. 146 (2003)