Let's Get to an Executive Order

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Join the twitter townhall with John Nichols, Derek Cressman, Heather McGhee, Courtney Hight, Zephyr Teachout and Lisa Gilbert.  Join us live at 10am PST 10/28, or follow the conversation later #NoSecretMoney.

 


Also on November 10th we'll be doing another call in day.

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Gyrocopter To Get Money Out

Earlier this week Doug Hughes, a mailman from Tampa, flew a gyrocopter to the Capitol to deliver 535 letters to Congress asking to get money out.
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Read his letter below:

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HURRAY - SB 27 is signed into law

CALIFORNIA COMMON CAUSE SHARED THIS PRESS RELEASE ON SB 27 being signed by Governor Brown today!
 
Governor Brown Signs SB 27 – Sheds Light on Dark Money
 
SACRAMENTO – Today Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 27, reforming the Political Reform Act of 1974 to further regulate campaign financing, adding the requirement that committees disclose donors of $100 or more where those donations were solicited for the purpose of making contributions or expenditures in California. This essential campaign disclosure bill will go a long way toward improving California’s campaign disclosure laws by closing the nonprofit reporting loophole. 

“Today is a great day for transparency and accountability,” stated Sarah Swanbeck, Legislative Affairs Advocate at California Common Cause. “This critical piece of legislation will lift the veil that hides the identity of secret contributors who influence California elections.”

SB 27 was initially introduced by Senator Lou Correa and sponsored by California Common Cause, the League of Women Voters of California, and the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) in the wake of large sums of out-of-state anonymous donations attempting to circumvent California’s disclosure regulations. In October of 2012, two out-of-state nonprofit organizations contributed $15 million to two campaign committees that opposed Proposition 30 and supported Proposition 32. Thanks to the complaint filed by California Common Cause, the FPPC forced the two groups to disclose their donors and ultimately levied a record fine of $1 million for improperly concealing their campaign contributions. Currently, California has collected only $300,000 of this $1 million fine. 

Signing SB 27 into law shows that Sacramento is committed to giving Californians as much information as possible about who is funding campaign ads and messages so that voters can make informed decisions. 

Once implemented, the new law will improve the efficacy of other disclosure bills under consideration by the California Legislature, such as SB 1253, the Ballot Imitative Transparency Act. Implementation will not occur until after the 2014 election cycle. 

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Governor Brown Signs SB 27 – Sheds Light on Dark Money

 

SACRAMENTO – Today Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 27, reforming the Political Reform Act of 1974 to further regulate campaign financing, adding the requirement that committees disclose donors of $100 or more where those donations were solicited for the purpose of making contributions or expenditures in California. This essential campaign disclosure bill will go a long way toward improving California’s campaign disclosure laws by closing the nonprofit reporting loophole.

“Today is a great day for transparency and accountability,” stated Sarah Swanbeck, Legislative Affairs Advocate at California Common Cause. “This critical piece of legislation will lift the veil that hides the identity of secret contributors who influence California elections.”

SB 27 was initially introduced by Senator Lou Correa and sponsored by California Common Cause, the League of Women Voters of California, and the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) in the wake of large sums of out-of-state anonymous donations attempting to circumvent California’s disclosure regulations. In October of 2012, two out-of-state nonprofit organizations contributed $15 million to two campaign committees that opposed Proposition 30 and supported Proposition 32. Thanks to the complaint filed by California Common Cause, the FPPC forced the two groups to disclose their donors and ultimately levied a record fine of $1 million for improperly concealing their campaign contributions. Currently, California has collected only $300,000 of this $1 million fine.

Signing SB 27 into law shows that Sacramento is committed to giving Californians as much information as possible about who is funding campaign ads and messages so that voters can make informed decisions.

Once implemented, the new law will improve the efficacy of other disclosure bills under consideration by the California Legislature, such as SB 1253, the Ballot Imitative Transparency Act. Implementation will not occur until after the 2014 election cycle. 
 


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California Common Cause is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization dedicated to restoring the core values of American democracy, reinventing an open, honest, and accountable government that works for the public interest, and empowering ordinary people to make their voices heard.

 

- See more at: http://www.commoncause.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=dkLNK1MQIwG&b=6391549&ct=13935667#sthash.IdfsEaxK.dpuf

 

Governor Brown Signs SB 27 – Sheds Light on Dark Money

 

SACRAMENTO – Today Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 27, reforming the Political Reform Act of 1974 to further regulate campaign financing, adding the requirement that committees disclose donors of $100 or more where those donations were solicited for the purpose of making contributions or expenditures in California. This essential campaign disclosure bill will go a long way toward improving California’s campaign disclosure laws by closing the nonprofit reporting loophole.

“Today is a great day for transparency and accountability,” stated Sarah Swanbeck, Legislative Affairs Advocate at California Common Cause. “This critical piece of legislation will lift the veil that hides the identity of secret contributors who influence California elections.”

SB 27 was initially introduced by Senator Lou Correa and sponsored by California Common Cause, the League of Women Voters of California, and the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) in the wake of large sums of out-of-state anonymous donations attempting to circumvent California’s disclosure regulations. In October of 2012, two out-of-state nonprofit organizations contributed $15 million to two campaign committees that opposed Proposition 30 and supported Proposition 32. Thanks to the complaint filed by California Common Cause, the FPPC forced the two groups to disclose their donors and ultimately levied a record fine of $1 million for improperly concealing their campaign contributions. Currently, California has collected only $300,000 of this $1 million fine.

Signing SB 27 into law shows that Sacramento is committed to giving Californians as much information as possible about who is funding campaign ads and messages so that voters can make informed decisions.

Once implemented, the new law will improve the efficacy of other disclosure bills under consideration by the California Legislature, such as SB 1253, the Ballot Imitative Transparency Act. Implementation will not occur until after the 2014 election cycle. 
 


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California Common Cause is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization dedicated to restoring the core values of American democracy, reinventing an open, honest, and accountable government that works for the public interest, and empowering ordinary people to make their voices heard.

 

- See more at: http://www.commoncause.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=dkLNK1MQIwG&b=6391549&ct=13935667#sthash.IdfsEaxK.dpuf
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SB 1272 is here

Sign our petition for SB 1272 

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SENATE BILL  No. 1272

Introduced by Senator Lieu

February 21, 2014

An act to submit an advisory question to the voters relating to campaign finance, calling an election, to take effect immediately.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST

SB 1272, as amended, Lieu. Campaign finance: advisory election.

This bill would call a special election to be consolidated with the November 4, 2014, statewide general election. The bill would require the Secretary of State to submit to the voters at the November 4, 2014, consolidated election an advisory question asking whether the Congress of the United States should propose, and the California Legislature should ratify, an amendment or amendments to the United States Constitution to overturn Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (2010) 558 U.S. 310, and other applicable judicial precedents, as specified. The bill would require the Secretary of State to communicate the results of this election to the Congress of the United States.

This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately as an act calling an election.

Digest Key
Vote: majority   Appropriation: no   Fiscal Committee: yes   Local Program: no 

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McCutcheon and The Gender Divide

McCutcheon and the Gender Divide



miriam&sheldon.ap.jpgWednesday's Supreme Court decision in McCutcheon v. FEC has brought a lot of speculation about the likely growth in the role of big donors now that overall limits on donations to parties, PACs and candidates have been demolished. But what effect will the ruling have on the share of campaign contributions coming from men versus women?

In the 2012 election cycle, 644 individual donors hit the aggregate limit of $117,000. Among them, 501, or 78 percent, were men; women accounted for just 22 percent these contributors. By comparison, among all individual donors of more than $200 in the 2012 cycle, only 66.7 percent were men, and they accounted for 69.7% of campaign contributions.

Women are a majority of the population, but a minority of campaign donors and a smaller minority of maxed-out campaign donors.

And if married couples are excluded, the percentage of women drops even lower. Of the 644 donors who hit the cap, 118 were half of a couple in which both spouses gave to the limit. That leaves a pool of 526 contributors -- of whom 84 percent were men.


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Time to Take a Stand

Democracy was blindsided four years ago in Citizens United when the Supreme Court gave an answer to a question it was never asked. What began as regional TV ads for an on-demand movie somehow let the Supreme Court undo a century of campaign law, insisting that no amount of money could corrupt a politician. The results have been disastrous—our electoral process has become an open market place for politicians to be bought by billionaires’ Super PACs.

Today, the Supreme Court issued a new ruling on election spending that will sabotage our democratic process further: McCutcheon vs. Federal Elections Commission. That the Supreme Court even decided to hear the case over whether aggregate campaign contributions should be limited to “only” $123,600 indicates that the Roberts Court seeks to continue to exacerbate the problem of money in politics. This short video filmed at the steps of the Supreme Court shows what is at stake in this decision.

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Wisconsin And New Hampshire

We wanted to share this great news from MOVE TO AMEND

Wisconsinites voted by huge majorities in thirteen communities in favor of  instructing Wisconsin’s Congressional delegation to propose and support — and the Wisconsin state legislature ratify — an amendment to the United States Constitution that clarifies three issues:

1) that money is not speech; 2) that corporations are not entitled to the same rights as natural persons; and 3) that Congress and the states can limit election-related spending to ensure that all citizens, regardless of wealth, can express their views to one another and their government on a level playing field.”

This continues our trend of never yet failing when the vote for the We the People Amendment is put directly in front of The People at the ballot box. Congratulations for a job well done to our volunteer organizers in Wisconsin!

Wisconsin's victories come on the heels of an exciting March in New Hampshire where organizers used the historic town meeting process to place resolutions of support for the 28th Amendment in front of their communities for direct discussion and deliberation. Move to Amend organizers and others were successful in passing resolutions through town meetings in 48 communities across the state!


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SB 1272

BREAKING NEWS! CA State Senator introduced a voter instruction bill to SB1272 EXCELLENT NEWS!

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Foreign money coming into US elections via PACs

BY ManfromMiddletown on Daily Kos

In the wake of the Citizens United case, critics of the ruling, which lifted prohibitions on direct campaign spending by corporations, raised the prospect of this allowing foreign nationals to influence US elections. Very serious people dismissed this trusting the our "robust" election laws would be up to the task of keeping foreign influence out of US elections. They were dead wrong.

In a first of its kind case, federal prosecutors say a Mexican businessman funnelled more than $500,000 into U.S. political races through Super PACs and various shell companies. The alleged financial scheme is the first known instance of a foreign national exploiting the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision in order to influence U.S. elections. If proven, the campaign finance scandal could reshape the public debate over the high court's landmark decision.

Until now, allegations surrounding Jose Susumo Azano Matsura, the owner of multiple construction companies in Mexico, have not spread beyond local news outlets in San Diego, where he's accused of bankrolling a handful of southern California candidates. But the scandal is beginning to attract national interest as it ensnares a U.S. congressman, a Washington, D.C.-based campaign firm and the legacy of one of the most important Supreme Court decisions in a generation.

Matsura was able to evade US law by using a shell corporation in order to funnel the donations to US candidates. Pre Citizens United this would have involved finding a large number of US citizens willing to act as straw men. Now these shell games are able to be played by corporations, where determining ownership, let alone citizenship, can be a massive task.

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How to seize back your democracy

By Ben Cohen and Larry Cohen

updated 11:22 AM EST, Tue February 11, 2014
CNN) -- The 2014 midterm elections are quickly shaping up to be the most obscenely expensive ever. As more and more outside groups shell out an unlimited amount of campaign cash -- while accepting bottomless contributions from big business and anonymous wealthy donors -- stockpiling huge amounts of campaign cash has become a political arms race.

Even so, this is the year concerned Americans can begin to turn it all around and get big money out of politics. Together, "we the people" can stamp out big money in politics.

If we don't act now, we're in trouble. The Supreme Court's 2010 Citizens United decision was a key ruling in opening up the gates to a torrent of spending by super PACs. Outside groups spent a whopping $2 billion in the 2012 election cycle, according to Federal Election Commission figures, compared with $298,549,659 in 2008.

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