Last week, CMD reported that a small GOP lobby shop tied to the Tea Party and David Koch's Americans for Prosperity group was awarded a $500,000 grant in a backdoor, sweetheart deal cooked up by ALEC leadership in the State Legislature and sanctioned by the Walker administration.
Opposition is growing to the idea of President Obama naming Larry Summers to head the Federal Reserve.
For many years now, the Center for Media and Democracy has joined with Public Citizen, Common Cause, People for the American Way, Move to Amend, Free Speech for the People, and other good government and grassroots groups in an effort to build momentum to overturn the Citizens United Supreme Court decision with an amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Through countless collective and individual efforts, we are on a roll. In total, 16 states and roughly 500 communities have asked Congress to initiate the process of overturning Citizens United by amending our constitution. The Nation magazine dubbed it the "most successful and uncovered" political movement in America.
In the wake of the jury verdict finding George Zimmerman not guilty in his killing of Trayvon Martin, many in the media have pushed the line that Florida's notorious "Stand Your Ground" (SYG) law played no role in the trial. They couldn't be more wrong.
With the latest Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia index ranking Wisconsin 49th out of 50 in economic outlook, high unemployment in Wisconsin is a problem that is not likely to go away any time soon. But, instead of trying to fix the economy in Wisconsin, Governor Scott Walker's Department of Workforce Development (DWD) is finding new ways to disqualify the unemployed from collecting benefits. This is unlikely to do anything but compound Wisconsin's economic woes.
-- by Wendell Potter, The Center for Public Integrity
I was not among those who believed the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision would open the floodgates of corporate money to influence elections and public policy. While the decision enables corporations to call for the election or defeat of federal candidates, those expenditures have to be reported and few corporations will take the risk of losing customers by getting involved in politics so publicly.
Originally published by In These Times.
Freedom of conscience is one of the most fundamental human freedoms. This freedom is not merely about one's ability to choose to believe or not believe in religion or a particular philosophy. In a democracy, freedom of conscience is about the ability to be critical of government and corporations, and to be free from the chilling fear that being critical will subject you to government surveillance.
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which is centrally involved with pushing environmentally destructive legislation on behalf of the fossil fuel industry, today complained that "Earth Day has been a largely somber event" when it should be "a celebration of the wonderful achievements humankind has made in cleaning and greening the planet," wrote Todd Wynn, ALEC Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Force Director.
In theory, Wisconsin has some of the strongest ethics and lobbying laws in the country -- legislators cannot accept even a cup of coffee from lobbyists or others who have an interest in the outcome of legislation -- but these laws are meaningless if the state ethics board does not take action to enforce them.