The Strange Case Of Citizens United

The 2014 election is looking more and more like a repeat of 2010.  Stunningly, there is a chance the GOP may gain control of both the Senate and the House.  What are Americans thinking?

What has it been about the GOP complete refusal to support any legislation proposed by Democrats that is so appealing?  What is it about “the world is about to end unless we slash government spending (every type except Defense)” that Americans like so much?   What is it about shutting down the Government that seems like responsible governance?

Even more perplexing is the GOP’s dealing with healthcare reform.  The Affordable Care Act is a copy of Mitt Romney’s MassCare which is a copy of a GOP think tank proposal.  Forgetting this hypocrisy, ACA moves Americans closer to the best in class status of the modern industrialized world.  How can a country as wealthy as America accept millions uninsured?    And how can anyone find the insurance company practice of canceling or denying health insurance coverage based upon a “pre-existing condition” acceptable (like these companies are in the business of insuring only healthy people, heads I win, tails you lose…?

Never the less various polls are suggesting the GOP could gain control of both Houses of Congress.  The belief is that GOP opponents to incumbent Democrats will be very well financed.  This financial aid will be flowing from all over the US through various opaque PACs.  All this free flow thanks to Citizens United.  Hmmm.

On the other hand, is something about Democrat positions that turns voters away?

For example, it might be hard to understand a position which overlooks law breakers (illegal immigrants) and yet asks voters to obey other laws.  It might also hard to support the continual extension of unemployment benefits in tight economic times when human nature suggests people will not try very hard to find work if they receive benefits.  And, while it is almost unfathomable to understand GOP polices around smaller (read less effective) government considering the housing bubble and reckless Wall Street practices which brought the Country to its economic knees, it only takes a moment when one runs into a restrictive government rule or regulation to want less government.  Hmmm, maybe the GOP do have a point?

The problem with Citizens United’s decision is more simple.  The Koch Brothers (and other like groups) can spend a fortune trying to sway voters to their candidate in States where they do not reside.  I cannot afford to spend the same amount.  The Supreme Court has likened this spending to “free speech” and in doing so has established that those with money have more free speech than those with less.

One way to rectify this imbalance would be to allow out of State US citizens to mail in votes.  In essence, if money knows no State boundaries, why don’t we allow votes to flow as freely?

This may seem like a silly proposal.  It does have, however, the potential of getting a truly national consensus reflected in our elected representatives.  The Koch Brothers idea of a path forward, while certainly their prerogative, should not carry more weight than my vote.

Explore posts in the same categories: Barack Obama, Democratic Party, Politics, Republican Party

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