Philadelphia Freedom: Businesses for 28th Amendment and Note on OccupyPhilly

[UPDATED- WITH PHOTOS AT END}

I’m in Philadelphia to testify at a legislative policy committee on Citizens United and corporate political spending. Here’s my testimony, Government of and by the People? Corporate Political Spending in America After Citizens United and the Urgent Need for the 28th Amendment. 

Judy Wicks, a founder of businesses such as Free People (now part of Urban Outfitters) and White Dog Cafe and networks such as BALLE (Living Economies), also testified on behalf of the American Sustainable Business Council about the need for the 28th Amendment to make our economy productive and able to serve the people and 21st Century needs.  Nearly 1000 business leaders have joined Free Speech for People and the American Sustainable Business Council in calling for passage of the People’s Rights Amendment. Businesspeople can sign onto Business for Democracy here  or here.

We’re hopeful that the Pennsylvania legislature will move forward with the Amendment Resolution calling on Congress to send the 28th Amendment overturning Citizens United and restoring the right of people to make the rules ensuring free and fair elections and representative government.

Occupy Philadelphia (OccupyPhilly) is in the square outside of City Hall. A lot of tents and people, well-organized, clear messages about government of the people and ending corporate domination of our government. Beside one tent with a big “love” sign on it is another one with a large “RON PAUL 2012” sign.

. Not too many other political candidate signs but clearly a wide spectrum from left, center and right (if those terms really mean anything) are represented here.

Small signs are posted saying “we police ourselves- please say something if you see aggression, public urination, drug use”. Apparently they do police themselves, because despite the large occupation of a complete city block of public square, I saw no police presence whatsoever, and everything is very peaceful.

About Jeff Clements

Jeff Clements is co-founder and chair of the board of Free Speech for People, a national non-partisan campaign to overturn Citizens United v. FEC, challenge excessive corporate power, and strengthen American democracy and republican self-government. He co-founded Free Speech For People in 2010, after representing several public interest organizations with a Supreme Court amicus brief in the Citizens United case. Jeff has served as Assistant Attorney General and Chief of the Public Protection Bureau in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office. As Bureau Chief, he led more than 100 staff in the enforcement of environmental, healthcare, financial services, civil rights, antitrust and consumer protection laws. In private practice, Jeff has been a partner at Mintz Levin in Boston, and in his own firm. Jeff also has served in leadership capacities on numerous boards, including that of the Portland Water District, a public agency responsible for protecting and delivering safe drinking water and ensuring proper treatment of wastewater for 160,000 people; Friends of Casco Bay, an environmental organization he co-founded with others to protect and enhance stewardship of Maine’s Casco Bay; and The Waldorf School in Lexington, Massachusetts. In 2012, Jeff co-founded Whaleback Partners LLC, which provides cost-effective capital to farmers and businesses engaged in local, sustainable agriculture. Jeff graduated with distinction in History and Government from Colby College in 1984, and magna cum laude from the Cornell Law School in 1988. He lives in Concord, Massachusetts with his wife and three children. Jeff Clements Twitter: @ClementsJeff Email: jclements@freespeechforpeople.org
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