For Immediate Release
January 23, 2012

Groups Energized by Introduction of Constitutional Amendments to Overturn Citizens United

As Grassroots Movement Grows, Amendments Receive Bipartisan Support, Enthusiastic “Netroots” Response

Washington, DC. – Free Speech For People joined with others in applauding yesterday’s introduction in Congress of two Constitutional amendments bills to overturn the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling in Citizens United v. FEC.

Congressman Jim McGovern of Massachusetts introduced the amendments on Tuesday. HJ Res 20 would restore Congress’ and the states’ authority to regulate campaign spending, and HJ Res 21 or the “People’s Rights Amendment” would overturn Citizens United and clarify that constitutional rights apply to living persons, not corporations.

John Bonifaz, co-founder and executive director of Free Speech For People said, “We thank Congressman McGovern for his leadership on this critical question of our time. These two constitutional amendment bills reflect the growing calls across America that Congress must act to reclaim our democracy. Eleven states have already urged Congress to send them an amendment to overturn Citizens United and restore democracy to the people. A national movement supporting these amendments is on the rise.”

David Levine, co-founder and CEO of the American Sustainable Business Council said, “It is crucial to address the unfair competitive advantages that are granted to those corporations with the deepest pockets under Citizens United and our broken campaign finance system. Business leaders across the country believe that HJ Res 20 & 21 are an important step forward to leveling the playing field and encouraging business to focus on building their businesses and putting America back to work.”

The movement to overturn Citizens United has been growing across the country at the state and local levels. This past November, voters in both Montana and Colorado approved ballot measures by nearly three-to-one margins, and seven other states — Hawaii, New Mexico, Vermont, Rhode Island, California, Massachusetts, and New Jersey — acted through their legislatures, which passed resolutions calling for an amendment; in two more, Connecticut and Maryland, majorities of the legislatures signed letters to Congress calling for an amendment.

Congressman McGovern’s amendment bills have already generated significant enthusiasm among the “netroots.” Shortly after the bill was filed, a post by Congressman McGovern which included a link to a video of him introducing the bills on the House floor quickly rose to the #2 spot overall on the popular Internet site Reddit:

H.J. Res 21 has garnered bipartisan support in the House. Co-sponsors include: Reps. Chellie Pingree, Mike Capuano, Barbara Lee, Steve Cohen, David Cicilline, Walter B.Jones (R), Sam Farr, and PeterDeFazio.

H.J. Res 20 has the following co-sponsors: Chellie Pingree, Mike Capuano, Steve Cohen, David Cicilline, Rush Holt, Mike Michaud, Peter DeFazio, James Langevin, and Carol Shea Porter.

About Free Speech For People

Free Speech For People works to challenge the misuse of corporate power and restore republican democracy to the people. The group advances the movement to amend the U.S. Constitution to overturn Citizens United, an earlier case called Buckley v. Valeo, and the fabricated doctrine of corporate constitutional rights. For more on Free Speech For People, visit:


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