right on the money

Citizens United v Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 50 (2010), was a landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court holding that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited under the First Amendment. This was a 5-4 decision, hardly unanimous but expected and has become “old” news. Now, of course, we begin to see the trickle of what could be a flood of corporate donations laundered through PACs under the guise of “business friendly” candidates for public office. Thanks to some states, like Minnesota, who still have a transparency law when it comes to big spenders we have found out that both Best Buy and Target have donated $250,000 combined to the campaign of the anti-gay Republican Tom Emmer. In their own defense both corporations say that Emmer is more “pro business” and site economic issues over moral issues as a reason for the donation. It is also true that Target will also donate to 2 or 3 democratic candidates as well. But the fact remains that Emmer has vowed to propose a constitutional amendment to the state constitution baring same-sex marriages. Whatever your leanings on this issue the idea that immense amounts of money can be thrown at a candidate over the objections of the McCain-Feingold bill looks and sounds ominous for the future of elections. It really becomes “business as usual.”

More Highlights of the Political Week

Senator Kyle (R-AZ) wants a frank constitutional discussion on whether citizenship should be extended to children of illegals who are born here. From what I can read of the “Contract from America’s” 10 points, point numero uno is Protect the Constitution which Senator Kyle seems to want to un-protect. I believe the 14th Amendment settles Kyle’s assertion, doesn’t it?

Section. 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.

Of course he’s a Republican senator and may not have read the full Constitution beyond the Bill of Rights.

Staying with Arizona just because it is fun, we have a little sanity with inanity…On the one hand J.D. Hayworth (R) would lose in the mid-term election to a Dem says a new Rasmussen poll. But on the other hand John McCain would beat the democratic challenger. This is both good and bad news. The Tea Party candidate, the extremist Hayworth is not gaining any traction with voters in Arizona which is bad news for the Tea Party, why? Because the people of Arizona are very smart. The good news is that once John McCain is re-elected, we can see him swing back to the middle.

Finally, again about the tax cuts/expiration in January. I must admit, I really feel sorry for Sarah Palin because here is another area which is beyond her and yet she speaks like she knows what she is actually talking about. Be that as it may, on Monday’s “Morning Joe”, Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) of the GOP leadership in Washington is willing to admit that extending the Bush tax cuts will increase deficits.

Meanwhile back at the ranch, in June, House Minority Leader John Boehner touched off his own case of deja voodoo “We’ve seen over the last 30 years that lower marginal tax rates have led to a growing economy, more employment, and more people paying taxes,” Boehner said at a press conference. “And if you look at the revenue growth over those 30 years, you’ve got a prime example of what we’ve been talking about.” Cuts in spending! Where John where?

Don’t you miss the “trickle-down” days? Remember when we were promised that the crumbs from the banquet were supposed to fall off the table to be caught by the little people? Remember in 1984, when a congressional study reported that cuts in welfare had pushed more than 500,000 people—the majority of them children—into poverty. Remember then-Attorney General Ed Meese’s response? “I don’t know of any authoritative figures that there are hungry children … people go to soup kitchens because the food is free and that’s easier than paying for it.” Right on Ed! John! Sarah! Ronald! Newt! and the gang.

And so it goes…