Take Action

Get Common Cause Updates

Get breaking news and updates from Common Cause.

Take Action

Join the thousands across the country who instantly rally when there is a threat to our democracy.

Volunteer

Join the thousands across the country who instantly rally when there is a threat to our democracy.

Donate

Make a contribution to support Common Cause today.

Find Your State

News Clips

Read stories of Common Cause in the news.

  • Filter by Issue

  • Filter by Campaign

Associated Press: Advocates warn House rule change could undermine voters

As lawmakers prepare to debate bills on abortion access, LGBTQ rights and immigration, Miles Beasley, a Historically Black Colleges and Universities fellow at Common Cause North Carolina, said he worries the rule could be abused to further disadvantage vulnerable communities. “These surprise votes rob us of our right to speak to our representatives before important votes happen, cutting us out of the lawmaking process,” said Beasley, a student at Saint Augustine’s University in Raleigh. He urged House Republicans not to resort to “petty power plays” when they vote on permanent rules in the coming weeks.

Roll Call: McCarthy names GOP members to House Ethics Committee

“The appointment of Rep. Andrew Garbarino (R-NY) to the House Ethics Committee is especially revealing,” said Aaron Scherb, a senior director of legislative affairs at Common Cause, in an email to CQ Roll Call. “When the committee is investigating Rep. George Santos’ numerous lies, fabrications, and significant ethical lapses, a reasonable observer could call into question the ability of Rep. Garbarino to be an objective investigator.” 

Associated Press: Group: N.C. request for redistricting rehearing ‘frivolous’

Hilary Klein, an attorney for Common Cause, wrote that the rehearing petition is “frivolous.” She referred specifically to House Speaker Tim Moore’s public statement that another look at the cases was needed because the “people of North Carolina sent a message election day” to reject the ruling of the “outgoing (judicial) majority.” The petition “is therefore motivated by improper purpose and grossly lacking in the requirements of propriety,” Klein wrote.

Plain Dealer/Cleveland.com: Corporate jets, bribes and dark money: Householder trial spotlights weaknesses in Ohio ethics laws

Catherine Turcer, executive director of the good-government group Common Cause Ohio, said it’s “astonishing” that lawmakers have yet to take up any reforms in response to the Householder scandal. “It’s clear to me that the people in power like the structure that we have right now, and that they’re benefitting from the lack of transparency,” Turcer said. ... Turcer said there’s a public interest in limiting lawmakers’ and other politicians’ ability to accept trips on private jets. “Any time our lawmakers are given perks from folks who want something, it’s a problem if our goal is reducing quid pro quo,” Turcer said. ... Turcer, the good-government advocate, said a lack of transparency in political spending is the core issue behind the abuses revealed by the House Bill 6 scandal. She said campaign-finance laws won’t prevent future scandals. But they could discourage them, she said. “I look at them like guardrails,” Turcer said. “If we have a speed limit that’s 55, 65, 70. You have people who might go 72. They might even go 80. But they aren’t going 120.”

Media & Democracy 01.28.2023

Salon: "Groyper" guru Nick Fuentes returns to Twitter (briefly): Hateful content keeps flowing

Yosef Getachew, a media and democracy program director at Common Cause, said allowing a blatantly bigoted and disruptive user like Fuentes back on Twitter sends a clear signal that the platform is failing to enforce its own policies, he added. "You're creating an environment where users may feel threatened, harassed or attacked, or you could be inciting others to engage in offline violence," Getachew said. "That's essentially how the [Jan. 6] insurrection started, given that millions of users were exposed to harmful content and were asked to organize and mobilize offline to try and overthrow our government. It's the same type of pattern." "There are reports out there that these groups are organizing, that they're harassing individuals, that they're building momentum," Getachew said. "A lot of times, those kinds of things are not taken into account. Platforms are just looking to see what's going on in this particular moment, rather than the bigger picture."

Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Looking to solve a Harrisburg problem, Pa. House Speaker Rozzi turns to Pittsburgh for advice

Khalif Ali, executive director of the good government group Common Cause Pennsylvania, told Rozzi his organization is concerned about the way legislators have attempted to use amendments to the state constitution. “The constitutional amendment process was never meant to be used as a means to advance vetoed and failed legislation, or to punish the court for decisions that weren’t favorable to a party’s agenda,” Ali said. He pointed to Senate Bill 106, a multi-pronged constitutional amendment package, passed by the General Assembly last year, that seeks to, among other things, change the state constitution to say there was no constitutional right to an abortion in Pennsylvania. It amounted to “a deliberate move to leverage a very sensitive issue to advance a political agenda,” Ali said. “We’ve gotten to a point where some elected officials are spending much more time finding loopholes in the system than moving towards a democracy that works for everyone and collectively solving our pressing societal issues,” he added. “What worries me the most is the fact that we’re getting dangerously close to normalizing this behavior. This listening tour is happening at the exact right time and depending on how the information is used, it could establish a basis for fixing a broken Harrisburg,” Ali continued.

Join the movement over 1.5 million strong for democracy

Demand a democracy that works for us. Sign up for breaking news and updates.