February 2018 Enews

ADONAL’S WELCOME...DC “FAIR ELECTIONS”...QUOTES AND IDEA OF THE MONTH...NEW BOOKS...MONEY ON MY MIND...FACTS YOU CAN USE... WELCOME FROM ADONAL Welcome back! I look forward to seeing you at our 17th DM National Student Summit on February 10th  and 11th in Albany NY. All are welcome! The conference, registration, room and board are free to DM members, and $50 to non-members. Bring your friends from other colleges, for interactive workshops, sharing best organizing practices, and hearing from great speakers including Congressman Paul Tonko and Connecticut legislator Gary Winfield. I know this will be the best Summit yet! Register today! DC “FAIR ELECTIONS” VOTE On January 9th, District of Columbia legislators voted unanimously to support public campaign financing for District offices. In a 13-0 vote, the “Fair Elections Act” passed its first hurdle to becoming a law. If ... Continue Reading

Defending Both Political Equality and Free Speech

The 2010 Supreme Court decision, Citizens United v. the FEC, and the closely related Appeals Court’s SpeechNow v. the FEC ruling have together transformed the structure of American politics. In combination, these decisions have permitted unlimited political spending, expenditures that are “independent” and “outside” of candidates’ campaigns. The only proviso is that these activities, often engaged in by what are called SuperPACS, may not explicitly coordinate with a candidate’s official campaign, a proviso that in practice is almost entirely disregarded. When these decisions were handed down, the anticipation was that a deluge of additional money would flood the political system. That has not occurred. Instead, the flow of political money has been redirected, away from official campaigns and into independent spending. The table below shows what has happened. Between the non-presidential years 2010 and 2014, outside expenditures increased by 66.7 percent. And they rose by 30.0 percent between the presidential years 2012 ... Continue Reading