We all should have heard of a group called Citizens United and the story about how they were able to convince the Supreme Court to afford the same rights to corporation that people have when it comes to elections. “Bossie is the president of Citizens United, a conservative group whose anti-Hillary Clinton movie in 2008 led to a landmark ruling this year.” “The Supreme Court threw out parts of a 63-year-old law prohibiting corporations and unions from paying to air ads for or against political candidates.” “The decision has contributed to an explosion in political advertising by outside groups, so far most of them allied with the Republican Party, that have flocked to raise big money from individuals and companies and flooded into some of the most competitive races across the country.” (Kuhnhenn, Jim, 9/27/2010, Associated Press, Citizens United Finds Niche after Landmark Case, Retrieved from www.abcnews.go.com). If this name sounds familiar it may be because this is the same David Bossie who was profiled in a previous article about to go after President Obama as he did with President Clinton. In that article he was quoted as saying about Obama “That guy in there now is truly a radical.” (Sarlin, Benjamin, 9/30/2010, The Daily Beast, Clinton Nemesis Now after Obama, Retrieved from email@example.com). He was wrong about Clinton and I guess time will tell if he will be wrong again.
The question now becomes that since those profiled in the article below were indicted and if convicted of conspiracy, bribery and honest services fraud, could the same be said for the corporations who will pour millions into elections to buy votes and since these individuals had lobbyists to access legislatures for their benefit, would these corporations not be just as guilty of these same charges? “The Justice Department unveiled an indictment accusing the owners of two of Alabama’s largest casinos, four state senators and several lobbyists of a scheme to buy and sell votes in the Legislature.” “One defendant has pleaded guilty to offering a senator $2 million to vote for a bill to keep the bingo machines.” “The head of the Justice Department’s criminal division, Lanny Breuer, said the corrupt scheming was “astonishing in scope … a full-scale campaign to bribe legislators and others.” “Behind the scenes, federal prosecutors said, operators of the two largest private casinos and teams of lobbyist were offering millions in campaign contributions, benefit concerts by country music artists, free polling and hidden $1 million-a-year payments in return for votes.” “If convicted, the defendants face up to five years in prison for conspiracy, 10 years for bribery, and 20 years for honest services fraud.” (Rawls, Phillip, 10/04/2010, Associated Press, Casino owners, senators charged in Ala bingo probe, Retrieved from firstname.lastname@example.org).
My solutions to all this is that the executive branch of these corporations should be the ones who are held accountable for the actions of corporations and face the same amount of time that individuals face. Any organization which promotes involvement in politics should have to disclose a list of all of their members so that each could be polled to see if the actions of the organization that they are affiliated with have been given the authority to act in their name. If the majority of the members did not authorize the actions of that particular organization then the executives of that organization should be indicted and charge as the individuals were above.