As we reported earlier this month, Waffle House executive and Georgia state senator Don Balfour is pushing a bill, SB469, that would prohibit picketing outside private residences, a law that would’ve put the Founding Fathers themselves in jail. The law is being pushed with the help of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and Corporate America, and is primarily targeted at labor unions.
Now, Georgia’s Tea Partiers have joined the occupiers and labor unions in battling against Corporate America’s war on free speech. On Monday, the Atlanta Tea Party sent a message to its 50,000-person list opposing the bill. One of its main activists, Debbie Dooley, also testified against it in the state legislature.
“Labor unions have First Amendment rights just like Tea Parties,” Dooley told Salon. “I don’t see how you can say it’s OK for one group to go and protest in front of CNN but a labor union can’t.”
The alliance between occupiers, tea partiers, and union members in Georgia against this corporate assault on the First Amendment is a promising sign that Americans of all ideologies are waking up and fighting back against the capture of our democracy by monied interests.
—Republic Report, March 2012
A constitutional amendment of some kind or another is thus necessary to address campaign finance reform and allow the Republican Party to elect conservatives to national office.
…The need to pass such an amendment is more than a left or right-wing issue–
both Democrats and Republicans are too cozy with big money and special interests.
Should politicians be accountable to their constituents and communicate honest principles, or to shady billionaires of varying political stripes?: corporations, church groups, and labor unions, as well as Big Oil, Big Pharma, Big Agriculture, the health insurance industry, the education privatization industry, the NRA, the military industrial complex, and various environmental groups, flooding the airwaves with commercials that distort their opponents’ records or grossly oversimplify the issues.
The current system of campaign finance has so weakened the ability of the Republican Party to elect conservatives to political office that perhaps a more radical approach to a constitutional amendment regarding this issue is necessary. If the Republican Party wishes to elect conservatives in all parts of the country, not just in “red states” or rural areas, a constitutional amendment that empowers the FCC to prohibit the broadcasting of political commercials on television and on radio must be passed.
As president of the Union College Republicans, I’m proud to put forward a right-wing argument for the necessity of this type of reform. First, disclosure of funds should be a fundamental part of fostering an open democratic process. Second, labor unions remain a larger part of the problem than even corporations.
For the better part of the decade, it was the Republican Party who led the charge to provide full disclosure of campaign donations.
Even during the 2012 primary campaign, candidates Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich have expressed mixed feelings about the role of super PACs, campaign fundraisers that are separate from candidates’ personal organizations, stating that the superPACs limit the control they have over their own campaigns.
–Nick D’Angelo, “A Conservative Case for Campaign Finance Reform“