Representative Jim McGovern of Massachusetts has introduced a package of two Constitutional amendment bills that would address each of the pieces of the Citizens United v. FEC disaster. (See HJRes 20- Political Equality-Spending and HJRes 21- People have Constitutional Rights)
At a Boston press conference this week, I praised Congressman McGovern’s approach as the best path forward for two reasons. Together, the Amendment language addresses both (1) the threat to democracy of unlimited election spending, without special interest carve-outs, and (2) the damage of judicial activists fabricating corporate (rather than human) Constitutional rights, in effect imposing a “corporate veto”. (See Remarks of Jeff Clements, Boston 1-24-13).
Here’s what McGovern’s office says about the Constitutional amendment language:
HJ Res 20 advances the fundamental principle of political equality for all by empowering Congress and the States to regulate political spending. It will allow Congress to pass campaign finance reform legislation that will withstand Constitutional challenges.
The second amendment, HJ Res 21, would overturn Citizens United … [and] not only addresses corporate rights as they pertain to campaign finance, but is broader in scope to clarify that corporations are not people with Constitutional rights. Importantly, the amendment clearly protects the people’s rights of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, free exercise of religion, freedom of association, and all other such rights of the people.
Here’s Rep. McGovern on the House floor, as he introduced the Constitutional amendment package: