In March 2010, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in v. FEC opened the door to super PACs by holding that the federal law limiting contributions to political committees to $5,000 per person each year could not be applied to a political committee that promised to make only “independent expenditures.”

At the same time, the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling in Citizens United allowed foreign-influenced corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money to dominate our elections in their favor. These two assaults on our democracy prioritize the profits of corporations and wealthy interests over the needs of the American people.

Now, as multinational corporations like Uber and Lyft prepare to push a new ballot measure in Massachusetts that would define their drivers as independent contractors, Massachusetts legislators have a chance to pass laws to abolish super PACs and to prohibit spending by foreign-influenced corporations in state elections. The bills, based on the models Free Speech For People passed in Seattle and St. Petersburg, Florida, will help Bay Staters reclaim their democracy from multinational corporations and big-money interests.

As Massachusetts State Representative Erika Uyterhoeven says, “Influence over our elections [is] in the hands of the rich and not the people whose lives we shape with our laws.”

Free Speech For People has been at the forefront of these critical issues from the very beginning. Founded on the day of the Citizens United ruling in 2010, we’ve spent over a decade championing innovative and groundbreaking legal actions and advocacy campaigns to ensure a democracy of, by, and for the people of the United States.

In a democracy, we the people must rule, not corporations and wealthy interests. Allowing foreign-influenced corporations and big-money interests to dominate our elections denies us this right to self-governance. It’s time to restore democracy to the people of Massachusetts and beyond.

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