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Support Exists for Citizens United Repeal, but Not Where It Matters Support Exists for Citizens United Repeal, but Not Where It Matters

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Support Exists for Citizens United Repeal, but Not Where It Matters

January 27, 2012
Stephen Colbert may have elevated the issue of super PACs to national debate, and most Americans may support a constitutional amendment to reverse the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision, but don't count on change happening any time soon, writes our colleague Jack Farrell in this week's National Journal magazine.

Farrell reports (for subscribers):

Stephen Colbert's crowd-pleasing ridicule of presidential campaign finance rules has posed a tantalizing question for progressive activists: Is this the "movement moment" for reform?

On Capitol Hill, the answer is no. Bipartisan trust is an indispensible ingredient in any overhaul of the political system, and that's in exceedingly rare supply. The public may giggle at Colbert's antics. Multimillion-dollar barrages of ads launched by super PACs may be wounding the leading GOP presidential candidates. But Republicans are content with the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission and other recent rulings that lifted restraints on campaign contributions by corporations and individual donors. ...

One of Mitt Romney's Bain Capital buddies was caught in a clumsy scheme to disguise a million-dollar contribution to a pro-Romney super PAC. Billionaire Sheldon Adelson, whose casino empire is the target of a federal criminal probe, signs seven-figure checks for the super PAC backing Newt Gingrich. Each side uses the money to try to destroy the other. But [House Majority Leader Eric] Cantor says there's no hunger in his caucus for change. And the Senate GOP leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, is proud of his record as the most resolute foe of past campaign finance restraints.

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