January 14, 2013
The wealth that was dedicated to swaying the electorate's choice of leadership is truly astonishing. Crossroads GPS invested more than $70 million on the 2012 elections. Americans for Prosperity put up more than $39 million and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce $36 million. Out of a desire to protect America and our democratic proceess I am writing to strongly urge the Securities and Exchange Commission to issue a rule requiring publicly traded corporations to publicly disclose all their political spending. I join those who are looking for such a rule sometime in 2013.
Groups that accept contributions from corporations, but are not required to publicly identify their corporate donors, spent millions of dollars during the 2012 elections. The Supreme Court ruled in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that corporations have the same rights as American citizens and their financial resources are the equivalent to free speech. This ruling created the loophole that enables secret spending in elections. The SEC has the authority to close it.
Both shareholders and the public must be fully informed as to how much corporations spend on politics and which candidates are being promoted or attacked. For the health of our democracy and our country's future, these disclosures should be posted promptly on the SECís web site.
Thank you for considering my comment.