Vote yes on Hollis Article 18 – Stop legal corruption

To the Editor:

How is it possible, you might ask, for political corruption to be legal?

The answer is really quite simple. In 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the 2002 McCain-Feingold Act by a 5-4 vote creating what some have called the political equivalent of a new Wild West.

Today’s political world is ruled by enormous sums of money; Lawrence Lessig pointed out, “Midway through the 2012 presidential election, 196 American gave more than 80 percent of the individual super PAC money. Congressional doors are opened to skillful lobbyists and large donors, so our elected officials feel compelled to go along or be targeted in the next election.”

In 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote, “All men are created equal,” thus forever embedding the idea of equality into our government. If 196 of our fellow citizens can heavily influence the shape of our laws, we have lost Jefferson’s intent for American democracy. The Citizens United decision in 2010 legitimized a system of political fundraising so profoundly unequal that, over time, the wishes of the majority of us will be totally ignored.

If we, the public have the will to fix this problem, it will mean taking action to urge Congress to adopt a constitutional amendment that does two things: 1. Guarantees the right of our elected representatives and of the American people to safeguard fair elections through authority to regulate political spending, and 2. Clarifies that constitutional rights were established for people, not corporations.

Help Hollis urge New Hampshire’s elected officials, at both the national and state level, to support a resolution that is on the ballot in nearly 500 municipalities and has already passed in 16 other states, including all other New England states.

In the interest of equality and justice, please vote yes on Article 18 at the March 12 Town Meeting.