More Money, Less Visible

In this update: 1. The Citizens United effect 2. One way the "good old days" were actually better 3. Global commission judges U.S. a “failing” democracy More Money, Less Visible

Email date: 9/20/12

In this update:
1. The Citizens United effect
2. One way the "good old days" were actually better
3. Global commission judges U.S. a “failing” democracy

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The Citizens United effect
The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision has had major effects on the way money flows in elections. In short, there’s a lot more of it, but it’s harder to see. That’s spelled out in greater detail in our latest post on the Big Money Blog.

As for the harder-to-see part, WDC’s report on the explosion of dark money in state elections is Exhibit A, which prompted both television and radio coverage this week.

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One way the "good old days" were actually better
The Democracy Campaign’s “End Legal Bribery” campaign continues to pick up steam, getting more media coverage this week. And last week’s blog about how obsolete Wisconsin’s bribery law and other anti-corruption protections have become was republished by The Capital Times both online and in yesterday’s print edition.

As modern politics seemingly falls deeper under the spell of money madness with each passing day, the Wisconsin State Journal served up a blast from the past courtesy of the Wisconsin Historical Society. The article recounts how Wisconsin political legend William Proxmire managed to repeatedly get elected to the U.S. Senate without accepting any campaign contributions. As the Democracy Campaign enters the second week of our petition drive to “call it what it is,” it’s worth noting that Proxmire was way out ahead of us. As noted in the story, in 1983 Proxmire “denounced donations from special interests as legalized bribery.”

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Global commission judges U.S. a “failing” democracy
An international commission headed by a former United Nations secretary general issued a report warning that the United States is a "failing" democracy because of out-of-control election financing and laws making it more difficult to vote. WTDY Radio asked the Democracy Campaign’s director for his reaction.