Merkley y los senadores anuncian la próxima acción del Senado sobre la Ley DISCLOSE

Washington DC – Today, Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley joined with a group of six U.S. Senators to announce that the Senate will soon take action on legislation to put an end to secret campaign spending.   On Monday, July 16, the Senate will take up the DISCLOSE Act of 2012, which will address the flood of unlimited secret money in elections unleashed by the Supreme Court’s Ciudadanos Unidos decisión. 

The DISCLOSE Act has 28 cosponsors, including Merkley’s colleagues on the Senate’s Ciudadanos Unidos Task Force: Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Al Franken (D-MN), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), and Tom Udall (D-NM). 

La Ley DISCLOSE exige que cualquier organización que gaste $10,000 o más durante un ciclo electoral presente un informe dentro de las 24 horas, identificando a los donantes que donaron $10,000 o más. Exigirá que los grupos políticos que se hacen pasar por organizaciones de bienestar social revelen a sus donantes y evitará que las corporaciones y otros intereses ricos utilicen corporaciones fantasma para canalizar dinero secreto hacia los súper PAC. 

“This country was built on the simple, yet revolutionary idea that the people should be in charge,” dijo Merkley. "El Ciudadanos Unidos decision flies in the face of that vision. In fact, it turns ‘We the People’ into ‘We the Powerful.’ The DISCLOSE Act is the first step to taking our democracy back. The American people deserve to know who is flooding our airwaves with negative ads. Basic disclosure will shine a light on the secret money that is polluting our elections and drowning out the voices of the people.” 

“The flood of secret money unleashed by the Supreme Court’s Ciudadanos Unidos decision threatens to drown out the voices of middle class families in our democracy,” said Whitehouse.  “The DISCLOSE Act will uphold every citizen’s right to know where this secret money is coming from and whom it is going to, and will help protect the interests of middle class families from the special interests who already have too much power.  It’s time for Congress to act.” 

“New Hampshire voters take seriously their job as hosts to the first-in-the-nation Presidential primary, but it was harder than ever to sort fact from fiction this year. The airwaves were full of negative ads paid for by unregulated secret money. There’s no accountability for what these ads say and no way to assess the credibility of their sponsors. Freedom of speech does not mean freedom of secrecy. We need more transparency so voters can make informed decisions.” 

“In Colorado, over the last two years we’ve been inundated with attack ads more than just about any other state,” Bennet said.  “Many of them are funded by only a small number of people through vague or anonymous groups and voters don’t have the opportunity to determine if they have an agenda, or a bone to pick with a candidate or on an issue.  Disclosure would bring information to voters, and accountability that bolsters democracy in our elections.” 

“In order to maintain a strong democracy, we need to ensure that working families have a voice – because in tough times like these, it matters who has a voice in our elections,” said Sen. Franken. “When the Supreme Court upended 100 years of law with Ciudadanos Unidos, it yanked the microphone away from average Minnesotans and turned it over to millionaires and corporations. Now a single person writing a check for millions of dollars can drown out the voices of everyone else – and they can do so in total secrecy. But the Supreme Court said we can shine a light on the shadowy interests behind these unprecedented contributions. That’s exactly what the DISCLOSE Act would do and that’s why it’s so critical that we pass it.” 

“We believe that all of the unlimited cash allowed by the Ciudadanos Unidos decision must at least be disclosed,” said Senator Schumer.  “This legislation seeks to limit the damage of the Supreme Court decision that has given corporations and the very wealthy unprecedented sway over our elections, and represents one of the most serious threats to the future of our democracy.” 

The DISCLOSE Act is supported by a broad coalition of voting rights, civil rights, and good government groups including Democracy 21, Common Cause, People For the American Way, the League of Women Voters, Credo Action Network, and Greenpeace, as well as by nearly 180,000 “citizen cosponsors.”