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View Diary: Corporations are NOT People: Support my Constitutional Amendment to Repeal Citizens United (196 comments)

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  •  It is a part of the process (0+ / 0-)

    Let's say I am a trusted and credible individual about a particular issue, for example, the environment.  

    Let's say that, as a result of my concern over this issue, I endorse slates of candidates in every election.

    Let's say that my credibility with some other people concerned with this issue is such that every time I endorse a candidate, that candidate tends to get more donations.

    Lets say that, after this happens a few times, I make it known, using my trust and credibility, that if people concerned about the environment send me money on PayPal--just as a gift--that I will donate that money to my endorsed candidates, so my fans and the people that trust me don't have to bother with the process themselves.  

    After all, people are free to send me money for whatever purpose they want, and I am then free to donate it as an individual.

    (And I make all the totals and donations public, so that there's no fear that I'm just embezzling the money.)

    Say I do all that.  What's the difference between me and the Sierra Club?  That they call themselves a club and I guess I used my own name?  At what point should the actions described above constitute a criminal offense for either me or my fans?  Why should any of them constitute a criminal offense?

    26, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-12(now)

    by Xenocrypt on Thu Nov 17, 2011 at 02:34:01 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  That's actually something Congress SHOULD address (0+ / 0-)

      People will try to skirt ANY law they don't like.  That's why we have Congress (to make more specific laws based upon the Constitution) and courts (to interpret both the Constitution and the laws of Congress).

      I could ask something else, along a similar vein.  (I'm not quoting you almost directly to be a smarty-pants -- just to demonstrate that, without a ban on aggregating funds, we'd still have a Citizens United environment):

      Let's say I am a trusted and credible individual about a particular issue, for example, the business environment.  

      Let's say that, as a result of my concern over this issue, I endorse slates of candidates in every election.

      Let's say that my credibility with some other people concerned with this issue is such that every time I endorse a candidate, that candidate tends to get more donations.

      Lets say that, after this happens a few times, I make it known, using my trust and credibility, that if people concerned about the business environment send me money on PayPal--just as a gift--that I will donate that money to my endorsed candidates, so my fans and the people that trust me don't have to bother with the process themselves.  

      After all, people are free to send me money for whatever purpose they want, and I am then free to donate it as an individual.

      (And I make all the totals and donations public, so that there's no fear that I'm just embezzling the money.)

      Say I do all that.  What's the difference between me and the Chamber of Commerce?  That they call themselves a chamber and I used my own name?  

      At what point should the actions described above constitute a criminal offense for either me or my fans?  

      Why should any of them constitute a criminal offense?

      =====

      My answer:  it should be a criminal offense because it distorts elections -- fosters corruption -- and is no different from the Banksters (except in your example, a purer motive).

      Plus, given this part of your argument, I'd say you could accomplish your goals without aggregation:

      "every time I endorse a candidate, that candidate tends to get more donations."

      Also, given the state of the law after my imaginary amendment passes, this part of your argument would NOT be true:

      "After all, people are free to send me money for whatever purpose they want, and I am then free to donate it as an individual."

      This would be aggregation of funds, and it would be illegal.

      •  Why is it illegal for people to send me money? (0+ / 0-)

        I'm an individual, they're individuals.  People solicit donations on PayPal all the time for their blogs or for their bands or whatever.  Those people can then donate their own money however they want.  So this becomes illegal because I say ahead of time that I'm donating it to candidates?  What if they just send me money as a gift, and I decide to donate it to candidates?

        And I agree that there'd be no difference with the Chamber of Commerce, either.  I don't think it should be illegal for any group to spend money in ways that would be legal for individuals.

        26, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-12(now)

        by Xenocrypt on Thu Nov 17, 2011 at 03:03:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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