Maryann Tobin

Unlimited campaign contributions by secret donors would have been called illegal political corruption three years ago. Today it is called Citizens United.

The 2010 Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission Supreme Court decision has turned out to be the worst thing that has ever happened to democracy.

American elections are now being legally bought by a small group of millionaires and secret donors, with both foreign and domestic interests. When the elections are over, if their candidates win, they will cash-in on their donations through political favors, primarily to change laws that benefit their own interests.

Since a small group of millionaires will "own" America’s elected officials, they will be able to force their will on the public. Therefore, legalized corruption through Citizens United has ended representative democracy in the United States.

More than a billion dollars in donations from private entities is expected to be funneled into Republican candidate's Super PACs. The only thing certain about it’s sources is that the word "donation" is not accurate. The people giving millions to 2012 political campaigns will want a return on their "investment."

“Americans For Prosperity, the group founded by the billionaire Koch brothers, are planning to spend roughly $1 billion this election cycle,” according to ABC News. “According to figures from the Sunlight Foundation, the top three Super PAC fundraisers this cycle are all Republican affiliated.”

What they will spend this money on is advertising. Lots and lots of advertising.

The goal of the Koch Brothers and other big money donors, like casino owner Sheldon Adelson, is to take control of the White House, the Senate, and House of Representatives. They want complete control so badly that they will misrepresent facts and their opponents while doing everything they can to suppress voting for the opposition. With their money, they will bombard the airwaves with messages that paint a frightening picture for the future of America if their candidates do not win.

There are several reasons for millionaires to want complete control of the U.S. government. It will give them the power to change laws in their favor. Changes in tax policy that favor the wealthy, as the Romney-Ryan budget proposes, would also profit big campaign donors.

But there is more at stake than just shifting money from the poor and working class to the rich.

The Koch Brothers, for example, are in the energy business. The elimination of pollution laws would cut their operating costs and raise their profits. Repealing the legal rights of the public would protect their money from lawsuits when people get sick and die from their pollution.

Sheldon Adelson, America’s third richest man, also has a lot to gain by changes in the law, especially as it relates to labor unions, his casinos in foreign countries, and laws that pertain to corrupt business practices.

“Adelson often gets sued,” said Rolling Stone. “That's how we know that the man trying to buy himself a president is under three investigations for violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.”

Adelson has also demonstrated a complete disregard for workers rights and considers labor unions “fundamental threats to society,” Rolling Stone added.

The Romney campaign recently took $10 million from Adelson, with the suggestion of even more to come. In exchange, Adelson would have a strong influence on a Romney White House, including decision-making on key foreign policy issues and union-busting laws, according to information obtained by Mother Jones.

Slick, millionaire-funded, negative campaign advertising is intended to influence voters into supporting Republican candidates. If they win, voters will find out after it’s too late that the person they voted for sold them out for money.

America is going to change dramatically if the Republican candidates beholden to CEO’s and millionaires take office.

One commenter on Think Progress summed-up the hidden dangers of the Republican Party and their Super PAC money quite concisely. “Republicans like to hurt Americans…They are more dangerous to America than the Taliban, Al Qaeda or any foreign entity.”

In fact, it was the Republican Party that caused a downgrade of America’s credit rating after they showed the world in the 2011 debt ceiling battle that their own political interests were more important to them than the good of the entire country. It was historic.

If the Romney-Ryan budget cuts become law, millions of Americans will suffer. Both current and future generations may see their health insurance disappear, their wages lowered, their Social Security benefits shrink or vanish, and their standard of living diminish as they have never seen it before.

The deficit will also explode under the pressure of the Romney-Ryan budget with even more in tax cuts for the rich.

It’s all out there on paper, for anyone who bothers to read the details.

Mother Jones reports that Adelson“told his friends and colleagues that he would prefer to keep his contributions under wraps in order to avoid controversy, and will likely focus donations mostly on non-profits affiliated with political PACs, which don’t have to disclose the names of donors.”

There is no doubt that Citizens United has made corruption legal in America.

“Many of the corporate executives convicted of campaign-finance crimes during Watergate could now simply write a check to their favorite super PAC or, if they want to keep it secret, to a compliant nonprofit group,” according to the Washington Post. “Corporations can now spend as much as they want to help their favored candidates, no longer prohibited by law from spending company cash on elections.”

Despite the claims of the Supreme Court and Mitt Romney, corporations are not people. The most obvious proof of that is their relative immortality. Corporations don’t get biological illnesses and die like people. They don’t marry or give birth like people. Moreover, as created entities, they are not registered voters. If you just substitute the word "human" for "people," the Citizens United decision loses all credibility. Corporations are not humans.

For those who choose to cast their vote based on advertising paid for by a handful of millionaires, they should first ask themselves why these people are afraid to be known and why they are willing to spend more than a billion dollars to change the outcome of the 2012 elections?

If you like writing about U.S. politics and the 2012 campaign, enter "The American Pundit" competition. Allvoices is awarding four $250 prizes each month between now and November. These monthly winners earn eligibility for the $5,000 grand prize, to be awarded after the November election.

Video: Sheldon Adelson willing to spend millions to beat Obama

Video: Colbert Super Pac


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