Business Leaders Speak Out on Citizens United

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Mary Boyle, Common Cause, (202) 736-5770
Adam Smith (202) 997-8929

Business Leaders Speak Out on Citizens United

41 Industry Leaders tell Congress to Pass Fair Elections

WASHINGTON - Forty-one business leaders from a diverse cross-section of
industries sent a letter to Congressional leadership in response to the
Roberts' Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC. According
to the distinguished group, the Fair Elections Now Act is the most
comprehensive response to yesterday's terrible decision.

"Yesterday's decision by the Supreme Court makes
it imperative that Congress pass the Fair Elections Now Act," said Alan
Hassenfeld, chairman of Hasbro. "It is long past the time to stop
requiring that our elected officials moonlight as telemarketers raising
money for their re-election campaigns rather then devoting all their
time to solving the problems before this nation. Is there a difference
between campaign contributions and bribery?"

From the letter:

With additional money flowing into the system due to the
Court's decision, the fundraising pressure on members of Congress will
only increase.

"We believe Congress must address both the Citizens United decision and
the problems of the current campaign finance system by passing the Fair
Elections Now Act (S. 752 and H.R. 1826). This measure would enact a
voluntary alternative system for financing federal elections, giving
candidates the option to run for office on a mixture of small
contributions and limited public funds."

Sponsored by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rep. John Larson
(D-Conn.), the Fair Elections Now Act would allow candidates to spend
most of their time talking to voters and working on our nation's
challenges and less time dialing for dollars. The House legislation
currently has the broad bipartisan and cross-caucus support of 127
members.

The letter was sent to both Democratic and Republican
leadership in the House and Senate on January 22, 2010. Signatories
include Edgar Bronfman, former president and CEO of Seagram's; Arnold
Hiatt, former CEO of Stride Rite; Gordon Segal, chairman of Crate &
Barrel; and William Ruckleshaus, strategic director of Madrona Venture
Group and EPA director in the Nixon administration*.

Please visit http://www.fairelectionsnow.org/businessleaders to view the full letter and signatories.

*Corporation affiliations used for identification purposes only.

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Common Cause is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization founded in 1970 by John Gardner as a vehicle for citizens to make their voices heard in the political process and to hold their elected leaders accountable to the public interest.

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