In an effort to reduce the influence of secret and corporate money in elections, the lawmakers also called on the IRS to investigate whether some 501(c)(4) nonprofit social welfare organizations, which do not have to disclose their donors, are violating laws by focusing on political campaign advocacy.
"We're entering a free-for-all now in this campaign system that's really been unseen since the Gilded Age," Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.) said at a press conference with Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.). "We're supposed to have fair elections somehow without enforcement."
Deutch and Welch said their ultimate goal was to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision, but said they took these more immediate steps to try to blunt the case's effects.
"I'm disappointed in Citizens United," he said. "In campaigns, people are going to do what they can legally do."
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