James Bopp, a renowned lawyer from Indiana, can arguably be called the father of Citizens United. In 2008, the shrewd lawyer was laughed at by US District Court Judge Royce Lamberth while trying to defend his client, Citizens United, a small Republican nonprofit organization. In the case, Citizens United wanted to air a movie titled Hillary during the Democratic Party presidential primaries. The film depicted Hillary Clinton as a European socialist and a cruel political schemer. In the film, Bill Clinton is accused of kissing Kathleen Willey in the White House as well as condemning Clinton for plotting to kill her cat.
The airing of the movie was prohibited by Federal Elections Commissions (FEC) because it was a 90-minute movie that didn’t identify who had paid for it. Although Bopp was argued that the movie wasn’t different from other 60 minutes ads, his comments were not enough to convince the three judge bench.
Two years later, the Supreme Court adopted most of Bopp’s arguments ending over 100 year’s controversial campaign financing laws. The Supreme Court ruled out that organizations have the First Amendment rights just like average voters. Citizens United was born as a result of Bopp’s efforts in reforming the campaign finance rules. Today, James Bopp is seen as an opportunist who uses small organizations to broaden loopholes in the law with the aim of benefiting wealth agencies and politicians.
End Citizens United To Raise $35 Million before the 2018 Congressional Elections
End Citizens United, a super political action committee focused on ending big money in the United States’s campaigns plans to raise a huge chunk of money. The PAC is committed to reverse the2010 Supreme Court ruling, which allowed dirty money into the American campaigns. Within the first quarter of this year, the organization contributed $4 million and is expected to collect over $35 million before the 2018 Congressional elections. This amount will be significantly higher as the PAC had raised $25 million during the 2016 presidential elections.
By the end of March 2017, a total of 100,000 people contributed towards the PAC. Among these contributors, 40,000 of them were new contributors. According to End Citizens United president and executive director, Tiffany Muller, the PAC received $12 per head. Muller further argues that the Democrats were angered by Trump’s win and are ready to fighter back by giving more towards the 2018 midterm elections. As a proof of their commitment to fighting back, the super PAC raised over $4 million for April special elections that saw Democrat Jon Ossoff win the congressional seat in Georgia.
End Citizens United is keenly looking into some of the 2018 races, which it will be actively involved. Two senators Sherrod Brown and Jon Tester of Ohio and Montana respectively could be among the people who will be endorsed by the PAC.