Before the Supreme Court rendered today’s controversial ruling on the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, controversial Florida Congressman Alan Grayson had already introduced five bills to deal with the expected outcome. Alan Grayson is once again leading the Democrats (and the Republicans) with his sharp populist instincts.
The bills are named with acid directness compared to the bland, misleading or duplicitous nomenclature often used in naming Congressional bills:
· HR 4431 – The Business Should Mind Their Own Business Act
· HR 4432 – The Corporate Propaganda Sunshine Act
· HR 4433 – The Ending Corporate Collusion Act
· HR 4434 – The End Political Kickbacks Act
· HR 4435 – The Public Responsibility Act
The Supreme Court’s 5-4 vote today in effect granted corporations the rights of persons – hence free speech and a nearly unfettered ability to express its political opinion, i.e. use its money – overturning an undisputed standard originating with early 20th century progressive President Teddy Roosevelt who sought to restrict corporate interference in politics. Although corporations cannot vote, they will now be able to heavily influence elections.
“By gutting the 100-year-old Tillman Act ban on corporate contributions, the U.S. Supreme Court has opened the door to political bribery and corruption on the largest scale imaginable. As Teddy Roosevelt said at the time, ‘property belongs to man, and not man to property.’ That’s why we have federal election laws, and that’s why we need them, both then and now,” Congressman Grayson said in a web site press release.
Grayson, whose 8th District extends north from Orlando to Ocala/Marion County, had already made YouTube fame by detailing the Republican health plan as, “Don’t get sick,” and if you do, “Die quickly.” When asked by Republicans to apologize, Grayson did apologize … to the 40,000 dead each year who are fatally stricken by a lack of health care.
As Democrats continue to churn about the loss of the Senate special election in Massachusetts, Grayson remains the exceptional Democratic leader who minces no words, actually fights for accountability and fairness, and has garnered the loyalty of supporters far beyond Florida’s 8th District. Indeed, his fans are nationwide and he has their donations of support to prove it. Is there a lesson here for Democrats nationally?
Grayson’s bills are compact at no more than four pages, but they have a long way to go before they gain Congressional traction.
Still, actions like this give Grayson a broad populist appeal as he takes on the big money/power interests who seem to have co-opted or purchased the votes of both Republicans and Democrats in DC. Only die-hard Republicans are angry with Grayson. Elected to work for the best interests of the people, his commitment to that task has made him a force to be reckoned with, as the leading Republicans who could have run against him (and refused to) have decided. Heads up, Democrats!