Campaign finance reform is not a niche issue any more than fighting for a clean and sustainable environment is. Leo Hindery, a former CEO of the YES Sports network, seems to understand this.
Writing in Huffington Post, Hindery had the following comments on campaign finance reform:
Campaign finance in this country is in a very bleak place after decades of direct attacks and equally sad unintended consequences. The Supreme Court’s 2010 landmark decision in Citizens United v. FEC was the final straw in the corporate hijacking of our political system which began fully thirty years ago.
In Citizens United, the Court, after determining that corporations are in effect “people”, concluded that the First Amendment prohibits the government from censoring political broadcasts in candidate elections when those broadcasts are funded by corporations or unions. Specifically, Citizens United struck down provisions of the McCain-Feingold “Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002” which prohibited all corporations – both for-profit and not-for-profit – and unions from broadcasting “electioneering communications”: i.e., advertisements or other communications that mention a candidate within 60 days of a general election or 30 days of a primary.
While Citizens United did not strike down the ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties in races for federal office – such contributions remain illegal – by giving back to corporations and unions the unlimited ability to fund political ads specifically mentioning candidates in newspapers, magazines and all forms of television, it handed to a relatively small group of CEOs near-unlimited powers of persuasion in what the Founding Fathers intended as the quintessential democratic process of the Republic.
Perhaps worse, in an electioneering system in which, as former California State Assembly Speaker and Treasurer Jesse Unruh famously said, “Money is the mother’s milk of politics,” it makes almost inevitable the accommodation, if not the sponsorship, of corporate interests by a relatively small number of sitting elected officials, never mind by aspiring candidates.”