For Immediate Release
New Analysis on Eve of 2012 Elections Shows How Big Money and Secret Spending Distort Democracy
WASHINGTON - A new analysis of pre-election data from the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and other sources by U.S. PIRG and Demos shows that outside spending in the first presidential election since Citizens United is living up to its hype: new waves of “outside spending” have been fueled by dark money and unlimited fundraising from a small number of wealthy donors.
“While the results of next week’s contests are up in the air, one thing is clear: big donors and secret spenders have been drowning out the rest of our voices for months,” said U.S. PIRG Democracy Advocate Blair Bowie.
Outside spending organizations reported $1.11 billion in spending to the FEC through the final reporting deadline in the 2012 cycle. That’s already a 200% increase over total 2008 outside spending.
Last week, new polling found that 76% of Americans support a requirement that companies publicly disclose their contributions to groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that funnel their money into politics.
U.S. PIRG and Demos are encouraging every eligible American to go to the polls by November 6th to push back on the power of big money.
“Unlimited, corporate, and secret money continues to undermine the principle of ‘one person, one vote,’” Lioz said. “It’s more important than ever that Americans use the power of their votes to push back and make their voices heard.”
A multi-issue national organization, Demos combines research, policy development, and advocacy to influence public debates and catalyze change. We publish books, reports, and briefing papers that illuminate critical problems and advance innovative solutions; work at both the national and state level with advocates and policymakers to promote reforms; help to build the capacity and skills of key progressive constituencies; project our values into the media by promoting Demos Fellows and staff in print, broadcast, and Internet venues; and host public events that showcase new ideas and leading progressive voices.