Democracy For All Amendment / Amendment should be ratified

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Position: Amendment should be ratified

This position addresses the topic Democracy For All Amendment.

For this position

Quotes-start.png Limits on campaign contributions and spending are sorely needed since Congress has become a platform for climate change denialists and has endeavored to block any meaningful federal government action on climate. Right now, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing an important, though incredibly modest, rule to limit carbon pollution from coal plants. The first major threat to completing the rule is a dirty energy-funded Congress. Quotes-end.png
From Constitutional Amendment Would Help Save Our Planet, by Robert Weissman, Annie Leonard (The Huffington Post, September 9, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png Republicans, fearful of deflating their cushion of cash, are trying to portray the amendment as an assault on the Bill of Rights. But writing unlimited checks on behalf of politicians was never part of the American birthright. This measure defines protected “speech” as it had been understood in the First Amendment for 185 years until the Buckley decision: actual words uttered or written by natural persons, not money spent, and certainly not from corporate treasuries. Quotes-end.png
From An Amendment to Cut Political Cash, by The New York Times editorial board (The New York Times, September 10, 2014) (view)

Against this position

Quotes-start.png Remember, Citizens United overturned a law that censored the airing of a political video — a film, for heaven's sake — because it was released by a small non-profit near an election. And during oral arguments, the government's lawyer said, according to The New York Times, that "Congress has the power to ban political books, signs and Internet videos, if they are paid for by corporations and distributed not long before an election." Quotes-end.png
From Senate amendment a threat to political speech, by Vincent Carroll (The Denver Post, September 9, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png It is worth reiterating that for all of the apocalyptic talk about all-powerful corporations, the Citizens United decision was at its heart about the fact that the government sought to make it a crime to show a film critical of Hillary Clinton at a time when she was running for office. The First Amendment plainly does not allow this, and the Supreme Court said as much. A First Amendment that does not protect criticizing political figures is not a First Amendment at all. Quotes-end.png
From We’ll Take Free Speech, Thank You, by National Review editorial board (National Review, September 9, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png Democrats claim that the Supreme Court has made politicians and political parties less accountable by encouraging donations involving outside interest groups. Outside of what? Democrat fundraising circles? Their actual fear is that less traditional candidates—including outsiders—will have the funding necessary to challenge incumbents in primaries without the blessing of party elders. Quotes-end.png
From Harry Reid Rewrites the First Amendment, by Theodore Olson (The Wall Street Journal, September 7, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png Both sides take money from rich people and corporations. And certainly it would be nice if there were less money in politics. But the Constitution does not permit politicians to place arbitrary restrictions on speech. Protecting the First Amendment should not give way to those so determined to gain a partisan edge that they are willing to rewrite the fundamental rights of Americans. Quotes-end.png
From Free speech needs no amending, by The Detroit News editorial board (The Detroit News, September 15, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png In 2010, the Supreme Court issued a 5-4 opinion striking down major parts of a 2002 campaign-finance reform law in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. This case and subsequent rulings, including McCutcheon v. FEC, have led to more political activism and more grass-roots engagement than ever before. In the 2012 presidential election, we quickly saw the results. More Americans voted than in any election; more minorities voted; more Americans engaged in more debate and had more information in their hands than ever before. Quotes-end.png
From Actually, Senators, You're the Ones Who Threaten the Country, by David Harsanyi (Reason, September 12, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png The First Amendment, as the First Congress passed it and the states ratified it more than 200 years ago, says: “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech.” The 48 senators understand that this is incompatible — by its plain text, and in light of numerous Supreme Court rulings — with their desire to empower Congress and state legislatures to determine the permissible quantity, content and timing of political speech. Including, of course, speech by and about members of Congress and their challengers — as well as people seeking the presidency or state offices. Quotes-end.png
From Senate Democrats’ extremism on display, by George F. Will (The Washington Post, September 10, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png Once you've opened the First Amendment for revision by politicians, and reinterpretation by judges, anything can happen. We know liberal editors tend to lose their bearings when they write about money in politics, but is the problem so great that it's worth letting, say, Senator Ted Cruz determine whether the New York Times Co. qualifies for protection under the First Amendment? Quotes-end.png
From Rewriting the First Amendment, by The Wall Street Journal editorial board (The Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2014) (view)
Quotes-start.png It’s important to note that while Democrats have raised more PAC money and conservatives have the edge in nonprofit advocacy fundraising, all the spending by Americans for Prosperity, American Crossroads and other conservative groups has gained Republicans almost nothing. The GOP didn’t retake the Senate in 2012, and President Obama won re-election. Money, even big money, is no substitute for solid organization and a good ground game. No one has proved this more than Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman Sheldon Adelson, who has poured a fortune into the campaigns of losing candidates. Quotes-end.png
From Amending the First Amendment, by Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial board (Las Vegas Review-Journal, August 10, 2014) (view)

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