Remarks during the Patriot Majority Stop the Greed Bus Tour by Kay Zimmerman, president of Common Cause Louisiana
Common Cause Louisiana is pleased to stand beside Patriot Majority to talk about political money choking our democracy.
Common Cause is a citizen’s lobby. We are non-partisan and we have been fighting for open and honest government for over 40 years. We worked to create major campaign finance laws which have been made ineffective by the Citizens United Supreme Court decision.
Thanks to the Supreme Court, in Citizens United and subsequent court decisions, corporations and billionaires such as the Koch brothers are investing millions of dollars to influence our election process.
They also are going to extreme lengths to keep this activity undisclosed.
These special interest groups have a louder say in our democracy as the Citizens United ruling took the teeth out of campaign finance laws. As a result these special interest groups are drowning out the voice of average Americans.
Like all Americans the Koch Brothers are entitled to their political views and activism. However, they are the center of a network that created and finance the Tea Party, ALEC, and other organizations that submitted briefs in support of the Citizens United ruling and other anti-reform court actions. And they bragged about the fact that Supreme Court justices attended and served as a recruitment draw, to their political fundraising – which Common Cause believes to be a violation of the judicial code of ethics. And now ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) are writing the laws for our legislators who are introducing them without change including but not limited to the Stand your Ground law in Florida, the education bills introduced and passed into law in Louisiana last session, and voter ID laws that seek to disenfranchise students, minorities and the elderly.
The Koch Brothers actions are a matter of profound public concern
For this reason Common Cause is engaging grassroots activists in a national campaign for a constitutional amendment that says corporations are not people and money is not speech. We call this campaign Amend 2012. Common Cause is also working to expose the influence and inside dealings of ALEC.
It is time we take back our democracy. Our representatives need to be responsible to the citizens and not special interest groups.
Pictures from the Event
Kay Zimmerman speaking with State Representative Patricia Smith; Ernest C. Stephens, LA AFL-CIO; Ed Parker, American Federation of State, Local and Municipal Employees and Mariah Hatta of Patriot Majority
Kay Zimmerman (left) of Common Cause Myriah Hatta (right) of Patriot Majority
Common Cause members: Sharon Simon, Felicia Kahn, Kay Zimmerman, Susan Fogleman, Maryam Raoof
Common Cause members: Susan Fogleman (left) and Kay Zimmerman (middle) Marilyn Davis of Patriot Majority (right)