The American world of politics has been on a full scale tilt since a legal decision in 2010 was announced. The United States government knows and understands the dangers that are presented when money is allowed to influence politics and that is why the Federal Election Commission has always taken campaign financing laws very seriously. However, a lawyer named James Bopp and his conservative group Citizens United completely upended the way things work. Let’s look at the legendary Citizens United decision regarding the Supreme Court and analyze what people are doing to limit its incredible damage.
The role of Citizens United in the political world can actually be traced back two years prior to the 2010 Supreme Court decision. The year was 2008 and James Bopp was lobbying the Federal Election Commission in order to allow him to air a ‘documentary’ he had created called “Hillary: The Movie” live on television at the same time that the Democratic Primary Debates were going on. The FEC takes campaign laws very seriously and when they saw the slander that was showcased in the movie they couldn’t help but laugh. The film claimed that Hillary Clinton tried to have a cat assassinated, it attacked her physical image, and it made some outrageous and unrealistic claims that even right wing judges couldn’t ignore. The case was thrown out by Judge Royce Lamberth.
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James Bopp and Citizens United didn’t end there, however. They had been on a mission to completely undermine the system of campaign laws that help regulate our country and they weren’t going to give up. In 2010 Bopp returned to court to make another desperate appeal. This time they would succeed and the Supreme Court, through controversial decision, would open up the gates of dark money and special interests into politics. The United States government hasn’t been the same since and you can direct your ire toward this specific decision.
End Citizens United, a political action committee, was created in order to raise awareness and raise money in order to combat for campaign finance reform. End Citizens United isn’t a new idea as there have been many committees created over the past seven years that have tried to repeal the Citizens United decision, but they have by far been the most effective of the bunch. The reason? End Citizens United is harnessing the anger toward President Trump that just hasn’t existed in any other White House.
End Citizens United had nearly 100,000 donors to their PAC over the first quarter of 2017. Those donors would help to raise nearly $4 million. Now, End Citizens United is focused on raising a total of $35 million with the goal of backing legislators who believe in campaign reform.