Executive Director, CoPIRG
Executive Director, CoPIRG
Voters to Congress: Get Big Money Out
Based on early returns, it appears clear that Colorado voters will approve Amendment 65 today by an overwhelming margin and send a clear message to their elected officials – get big money out of our elections. As of 8pm and with 1.2 million votes reported, Amendment 65 was passing overwhelmingly in counties including Mesa, Douglas, Kit Carson, Boulder and Jefferson.
“Colorado has spoken: it’s time to take away the corporate megaphones,” said Danny Katz Director of CoPIRG. “While voters were divided on a lot of candidate races, they overwhelmingly agreed that we need to close the floodgates of unlimited contributions and spending.”
Amendment 65’s passage came during the first presidential election since Citizens United, a 2010 Supreme Court decision that opened the floodgates for big money by removing election spending limits for corporations and wealthy individuals.
“Citizens United threatens to turn government of the people, by the people and for the people into a government of the privileged, by the big corporations, and for the special interests. Over time, politicians will have to pander to the interests of large corporations and the richest 1% to stand a chance of getting elected,” said Maureen Kirk, President of Colorado Fair Share. “The voices of ordinary Americans will be drowned out. That’s why Amendment 65 passed: because Coloradans– just want to be heard.”
Colorado joins nine states and over 300 cities and counties that have passed similar resolutions Montana is also considering a similar initiative today.
Colorado Fair Share led the effort to qualify Amendment 65 for the Colorado ballot by gathering 180,000 signatures in one short month.
“Because of the Supreme Court’s flawed decisions, the best way to fix our broken campaign finance system is to pass a constitutional amendment that would allow for campaign contribution limits,” said Katz. “After two years of inaction following Citizens United, Amendment 65 gives our elected officials a powerful wake up call.”
In coordination with partners from across the country, CoPIRG, Colorado Fair Share and others will launch a new campaign in the coming days to ensure Colorado’s congressional delegation follows through with Amendment 65’s clear instruction. Most of the delegation declined to take a formal position on Amendment 65 prior to Election Day.
“Coloradans have made clear that it’s time for our delegation to stand together to reject Citizens United,” said Katz.
CoPIRG – the Colorado Public Interest Research Group is a non-profit, non-partisan, public interest advocacy group. For more information – www.copirg.org
Colorado Fair Share – a new grassroots group coming together of ordinary middle class Coloradans feeling the economic squeeze, who know that the only way to counter the increasing influence of the privileged few, is to get organized. – www.fairsharealliance.org/colorado-fair-share