In the field of political activism, there is a new entrant determined to eradicate financial malpractice that has blemished the political arena. The group aims to achieve this by funding the campaigns of Democratic aspirants in both the upper and the lower houses. The foundation, named End Citizens United, has up to date raised $2 million since its inception. According to communications executive Richard Carbo, the establishment has projected the fundraiser to accrue a whopping $30 million.
True to its name, the primary objective of the group is to lobby a constitutional amendment that will nullify the Citizens United ruling made by the Supreme Court. The decision, made in 2010, was the reason behind the rapid upsurge of political activism committees as well as pumping of dirty money into the political landscape. The move by End Citizens United has received a warm welcome, with their petition currently boasting of over 325,000 signatories. The plea seeks to compel the Congress to pass the amendment. The future is promising for the petition, with the group having collaborated with the Hillary Clinton campaign team to use its massive email subscription list; which has over 4 million members. The entity has also declared support of many Democrats across various states.
Speaking on the matter, Richard Carbo stated that his organization was different to other financial reform activists. Contrary to other groups, End Citizens United was campaigning for candidates who supported reform – and could pass the required legislation if elected. The aspirants also promised to oppose Citizens United. As a measure of supporting their preferred candidates, the group created an autonomous division that would provide fiscal support to the nominees through incentives such as digital and conventional advertising.
Though End Citizens United is optimistic of sanctioning financial reforms, the dream of passing a constitutional amendment has raised some doubts among economic and political experts. For a change to be effected, it needs to be approved by at least 67% of members in both houses, as well as being endorsed by over 75% of all states. Even worse, this could prove to be a daunting task since no amendment has been passed for over two decades.
Senior campaign experts have written off the prospect of a constitutional amendment, saying that it is an uphill task. However, Carbo remains defiant that his group is on the right track. He believes that the projected $3o million could play a significant part in the process. So far, End Citizens United has received donations from over 136,000 individuals.
About End Citizens United
This is a political activist group whose sole objective is to advocate for reforms in campaign financing. Backed by grassroots members, the PAC aims to eliminate dark money in political through electing reformists and advocating for constitutional changes.
Billionaire industrialist Charles Koch appears to be at the opposite end of the political spectrum from democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, but Koch does agree with him on a couple of issues. Koch wrote in a recent Op-Ed piece in the Washington post that there are issues where he agrees with Sanders, a self proclaimed democratic socialist.
Charles Koch and his family run Koch Enterprises, a petroleum company in Wichita, Kansas that has worldwide holdings. They are listed as the second wealthiest family in the nation. Koch also has a history of supporting republican candidates, and he is a strong libertarian. He believes and promotes free market economics and wants as little governmental involvement as possible, both in business and in people’s lives.
But Charles Koch said in the writing that he agrees with Sanders that growing income inequality is a major problem, and that the criminal justice system needs reform. While he agrees with Sanders on these issues, the two are very different in how they want to address these issues.
Koch wrote that history has shown a bigger and more costly federal government has actually put the disadvantaged in a position where they are less likely to improve their lives. This is the reason he opposes most social programs that people like Sanders support. They do agree that there is a problem, and that it is getting worse, but they are still far apart on how to address those issues.
Koch is a consistent libertarian though. He also opposes corporate welfare as that tends to put the government in a position of picking winners and losers. he is consistent in thinking less government involvement is better for everyone. He opposed ethanol subsidies, for instance, even though they would have benefited his company that is involved in that industry.
Koch wrote also that the wealthy are more easily able to get out of things like drug charges, and he agrees with Sanders that this is wrong. He thinks it is also wrong that a conviction would hold a person back even after they have paid their debt to society. As a result his company has stopped asking applicants if they have ever been convicted of a crime.
Koch said he was happy to see Sanders speaking out for those struggling to get ahead, and opposing a system that favors the rich over the poor. But he said expanding the government’s role is not the answer.
Charles Koch, American Businessman, billionaire, and famous Conservative Republican recently surprised his followers with an announcement that he found some common ground and agreed with Bernie Sanders. Sanders is a current Democratic candidate and a famous pusher of Socialism, something most Republicans strongly disagree with.
Koch is the owner of Koch Industries
, a company that he inherited and grew into a conglomerate that works in the oil industry as well as commodity trading, forest products, ranching products and well known brands like Lycra, quilted Northern, Dixie Cup, and Stainmanster.
Being a billionaire is what makes his agreement with Sanders the most interesting, socialism doesn’t benefit someone like Charles Koch
, but he has managed to find common ground on the point that the current political and economic system is rigged to favor the privileged few. Sanders has spent a lot of campaign time pointing fingers at both Charles and his brother David
for the current mess that is American politics and economics. While the two may not agree on how to fix the problem, at present, it is quite clear that something isn’t working economically, politically, or with the flawed justice system.
Koch has stated that he applauds Sanders for bringing to light the struggle of many Americans who can’t seem to get ahead, but that is where the agreement starts. While Sanders believes the government needs to have more control in peoples and make decisions for them, Koch completely disagrees. In fact, Koch has funded numerous programs
and groups that spread the message and educate on how shrinking the governments control will actually benefit the people and the economy more. While Sanders believes those who have earned the most are the reason others struggle to make ends meet and offsets the balance because those top few combine their money with political power and tilt the playing field in their favor. In fact, the Koch brothers along with their network of billionaire friends will likely spend a collective sum of around $900 million to influence the 2016 political race.
One point Sanders and Koch do agree on is the need to cut corporate welfare, even the ones that benefit his current company. The two also agree that the current justice system is a mess. Those who commit crimes and are wealthy often are treated differently and play by different rules than those who have no financial backing. Both men see these flaws and agree this needs to change.
At the end of the day, Koch may agree with Sanders on a few big talking points, but it’s not a shift for him politically. Koch is a strong conservative
and won’t be voting for Sanders. He stands by the past and it’s proof that Sander’s plan for a more controlling government will not improve the lives of those at a disadvantage.
Both President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are desperate to see the Patriot Act partially extended in what is known as the Freedom Act. The bill already passed the House by a veto-proof majority. However, it has stalled in the Senate as members of both parties expressly want to see the Patriot Act sunset; the current set of statutes will expire as soon as the clock strikes midnight Monday morning, June 1. Ahead of complying with the expiration of the law, intelligence agencies have begun the orderly process of shutting down their surveillance programs.
Despite the hastily assembled special session, it is not clear if the Senate can pull off an 11th hour rescue of the act. This is because Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, a 2016 GOP presidential candidate, is prepared to filibuster any bill looking to extend the Patriot Act in any form. Opponents of the law understand that if it is allowed to expire, it will be almost impossible to reauthorize the law’s various surveillance programs in a separate bill. The intelligence community is touting the importance of the law in preserving the safety of Americans. By the same token, they are sounding the voice of warning should the law be allowed to expire, at least according to Stephen Murray CCMP Capital. President Obama points out on the NY Post
that aside from the NSA bulk meta data surveillance program, which the Freedom Act would end, most aspects of the Patriot Act do not threaten the privacy of Americans.
In the summer of 2011, government contractor Warren Weinstein was abducted by the terrorist organization known as Al Qaida. This put Weinstein’s wife and children in a position of enormous stress. The federal government maintains disparate services across a range of bureaus which deal with attempts to secure the safe release of American captives. However, the effectiveness of those organizations is limited. Finally, the Weinstein family decided they best way to go about trying to secure the release of Mr. Weinstein was to go to their congressman and senators.
The decision to involve elected leaders was painful for the Weinstein family as it would make their plight public. However, they were unsatisfied with the pace of progress for Warren. Their entire congressional delegation from the state of Maryland got involved. It proved to be beneficial as senators and congressman were able to prod different agencies to work in a more cohesive manner. In the end, Mr. Warren lost his life, but it was not directly at the hands of his captors. He perished in a drone strike against the terrorists. An aide to Maryland Senator Ben Cardin made the phone call to the Weinstein family informing them of the tragic events this past January. Flávio Pentagna Guimarães BMG says that this situation is tragic.
In the time since, the Weinstein family has become convinced the government must do more to secure the release of Americans held captive abroad. This will likely reemerge as a sticking point with congress over the Iran nuclear deal. Thus far, President Obama has been reluctant to make the release of all Americans held captive a precondition to lifting any sanctions.