End Citizens United Dedicated To Ending Its Namesake
End Citizens United is a political action committee that is committed to ending what some observers see as one of the worst rulings ever made by the U.S. Supreme Court. The Citizens United decision has done what many critics feared, by giving wealthy donors the opportunity to seriously manipulate the American political process.
Established in March 2015, End Citizens United also relies upon donors to promote its cause. However, these are largely grassroot donors whose average contribution is less than $15. The secret of its success comes from the tremendous number of donors supporting its cause. The organization today has more than 3 million members and has received about 2.5 million contributions totaling some $35 million. Also important to its success has been its dedicated staff of Democratic operatives and a board of directors on a mission to reverse the decision of the court.
End Citizens United hopes to attain its goal of ending unlimited political contributions by electing candidates dedicated to reforming the nation’s electoral system and by supporting ballot measures designed to encourage such changes. Additionally, End Citizens United is taking action to bring the issue to the center of attention throughout the American political arena, from the federal to the local level.
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The organization has joined the Democratic Party in its fight due to the simple fact that Republican leaders largely supported the action of the court and have blocked attempts at reversing the decision. Accordingly, End Citizens United has endorsed Democratic candidates in key races and has also come to the defense of other candidates who have themselves been targeted by special interest groups and conservative political action committees.
Officially known as Citizens United v. the Federal Election Commission, the 5-4 court decision was handed down in 2010. The court ruled that established restrictions on political donations by corporations, labor unions and other organizations violated the right to free speech, which is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. The ruling established the principle that “corporations are people,” with the same rights as private citizens. The end result was a massive influx of donations from wealthy interests in support of certain candidates or political causes. The new funding mechanism would also hamper attempts to trace the source of the donations.
Barring further court action, the overturning of the Citizens United decision would require an amendment the U.S. Constitution. This could only be done by a vote of two-thirds of the members of both houses of the U.S. Congress and ratification by three-quarters of the American states. Despite the obvious obstacles, End Citizens United is continuing to pursue its goal of repeal, perhaps gaining hope from a new poll ranking special interest funding as second only to national security when it comes to public concern.
Learn more about End Citizens United: https://actionnetwork.org/groups/end-citizens-united