Legislative Action

Democracy 21 has helped to develop and advocate for the following campaign finance reform measures pending in Congress.

The Empowering Citizens Act, introduced by Representatives David Price and Chris Van Hollen, would establish a system of public financing for federal races that empowers citizens to participate in the elections by matching their small contributions with multiple small funds. The Act also would curb the role of Super PACs in federal elections and ensure that outside spending groups do not coordinate with federal candidates. The Price-Van Hollen legislation incorporates many of the recommendations from the Democracy 21-Brennan Center proposal.

The DISCLOSE Act is legislation to close the contribution disclosure loopholes in the federal campaign finance laws that resulted in an estimated $400 million in secret contributions being spent by outside groups in the 2012 federal races.

Featured Articles

Fred Wertheimer for Huffington Post: “Citizens United and its Disastrous Consequences: The Decision”

  January 21 marks the sixth anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, one of the worst and most damaging decisions in the Court’s history. In the case, the Supreme Court, by a 5 to 4 vote, ruled that it was unconstitutional to ban corporations from making independent expenditures …

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NY Times Editorial: “The Custom-Made ‘Super PAC’”

According to the editorial: The family-financed super PACs are only the latest and most outrageous examples of how super PACs are used in this campaign cycle to evade the limits on donations. These spending groups are now a virtual requirement in competitive congressional elections. Saul Anuzis, formerly the chairman of the Michigan Republican Party, said …

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Roll Call: “Conventions or Ailing Kids? Bill Trade-Off Not as Simple as It Looks”

The Senate yesterday passed legislation by voice vote to repeal a portion of the presidential financing system. The bill, H.R. 2019, passed earlier in the House, purports to provide for a 10-year pediatric research initiative, but in reality the bill does not provide any actual increased funds to conduct pediatric research. At the same time, …

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NY Times Editorial: “The Line at the ‘Super PAC’ Trough”

The Times editorial discusses the dangers of individual candidate Super PACs and endorses the Empowering Citizens Act, introduced by Representatives David Price and Chris Van Hollen, as legislation to deal with this dangerous problem. According to the editorial, “This election year will be the moment when individual candidate super PACs – a form of legalized …

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