End Citizens United Fights the Campaign Finance Abuses of Rick Scott

Florida’s governor, Rick Scott may be in violation of the laws dictated by the Federal Election Commission. Apparently, a Super PAC he once the chairman of the group, but now that he is running for a Senate seat, the PAC is pouring money into his campaign. End Citizens United is alleging Rick Scott is going around campaign finance laws by getting the Super PAC, which was created to fund the president’s campaigns to pay his senatorial campaign bills and allowed Scott to bypass disclosure laws.

End Citizens United made note of the fact that Rick Scott has a history of unsavory business practices. In 1997, when Rick Scott was CEO of Columbia/HCA, he was charged with Medicare fraud. After an extensive FBI probe, the company was found guilty of fraudulent billing and they were fined $1.7 billion. Rick Scott resigned then in disgrace. After leaving, he went into venture capitalism for a short time and reappeared in the healthcare industry after starting a 24-hour cable health care channel and co-founding Solantic, a healthcare company focusing on urgent care. In 2010, he ran for governor in Florida. After serving two terms as Florida’s governor, he is not eligible to run for a third term. His next stint will be an attempt at a seat in the United States Senate.

It’s Rick Scott’s choice to use the Super PAC to fund his campaign. It was also his choice to the be chairman for the PAC and it’s also been his choice to exploit that very close relationship with the PAC to funnel soft money into his campaign. All his donors have together raised $78 million for his senatorial race. It’s clear that Rick Scott’s finances are uniquely entwined with more than one of his donors making it difficult to separate proper campaign donations from abuses. Another good example of these abuses is his relationship with The New Republican. They share the same address; he raises money for them and the paper takes polls for him and campaigns for him. All these efforts cost money and represent financial support.

End Citizens United has been fighting campaign finance abuses since its inception after the Citizens United decision in 2010 giving corporations the same right to free speech as individuals. Ever since that decision, Republican politicians have been able to raise huge sums of money on the backs of wealthy donors and corporations. Rick Scott, like so many Republican candidates is not interested in campaign finance reform because he embraces the dictates of the 2010 decision. End Citizens United will continue to fight the abusers of campaign finance like Rick Scott and it will continue to support those who fight the kinds of abuses Rick Scott and so many from his party support.

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End Citizens United Gives the Power Back to the Individual

Politics today is characterized by big corporations pouring millions into the campaigns of Republican candidates. Corporations were once banned from doing this, but it was made possible after a Supreme Court ruling in favor of Citizens United. The ruling made it possible for corporations to exercise the First Amendment as if they were individuals. As a result of the ruling corporations could give huge amounts of money to campaigns through advertising dollars and never have to reveal their contributions to the public.

End Citizens United was formed five years after the ruling on March 1, 2015. Its goal was to put an end to the unfair advantage gained by those backed by huge corporations and big money. The U.S. government was designed by our forefathers to be of the people and by the people. Corporations are not individuals and they shouldn’t be given the same rights.

The Supreme Court however, disagreed with this concept. Now, the billions of dollars available to corporations are being employed to help Republican congressional and presidential candidates win their elections. The Republicans have fostered deep ties with the wealthy elite and were positioned perfectly to take full advantage of the Citizens United ruling. Corporations like Wal-Mart, Amway and Koch Industries are known to be Republican supporters and they have billions at their disposal.

Those billions regularly fund advertisements for the Republican Party. Consequently, the fight for campaign reform intensifies. End Citizens United is one of the most adamant forces fighting back. They have backed many Democratic candidates that agree to fight the Citizens United ruling and to fight for campaign reform.

Including End Citizens United, these Democratic candidates are backed by the public-at-large and the following organizations: American Civil Liberties Union (ALCU), The Sunlight Foundation, the League of Women Voters and the Center for Political Accountability. The ultimate goal of all these groups is to change the Amendment to read that free speech is confined to the individual and not to be bestowed upon corporations.

This will once again level the playing field in politics, so that big money cannot sway opinions with a bombardment of advertising. Another goal of End Citizens United is to shorten the campaign term. The last presidential campaign lasted a total of 597 days. The average congressional campaign lasts well over six months to a year. In that time, the public is bombarded with advertisements, debates and polling. End Citizens United simply wants to level the playing field between all candidates, shorten the campaigning period and give the governing power back to the individual U.S. citizen.

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