Three-plus years after the U.S. Supreme Court’s corporate money in politics decision in Citizens United v. FEC, the movement to overturn some of its central holdings has not abated. On Tuesday, Los Angeles passed a ballot measure to endorse state and federal amendments overturning the decision, with an overwhelming 76.6 percent in favor of the resolution. The nation’s second-largest city now joins 400 other jurisdictions, including 175 cities and 13 states, in rejecting the notion that corporations are people, and the Supreme Court’s holding that corporate spending will not lead to corruption.
The Los Angeles measure calls on state legislators and regional members of Congress to both propose and support any amendments that would limit parts of both Citizens United v. FEC and an earlier decision striking down campaign finance limits, Buckley v. Valeo. The resolution, Proposition C, asserts that “corporations do not have the constitutional rights of human beings,” “corporations do not engage in constitutionally protected speech when spending corporate money to influence the electoral process,” and limits on political spending that ensure all Americans have an opportunity to be heard are permissible. Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear another case that could make it even easier for the wealthy to buy elections.