Corporations Are NOT People
Corporations do not breathe, they do not have children, they do not die fighting in wars for our country, and they do not vote in elections. And, we Montanans certainly don’t want them to vote, or influence votes. We haven’t since we passed our state Corrupt Practices Act in 1912.
Only People Are People
Corporations are not people, they are artificial constructs, created under state or federal statute, and designed to limit the liability of their owners. But federal courts have twisted the U.S. Constitution to grant corporations the same constitutional rights as people.
Corporations should do what they are intended to do: serve as a means to accumulate capital to innovate, take risks, meet market demands, and create jobs. They should not be in the business of using the corporate checkbook to buy elections.
Corporate Money Corrupts Our Democracy
Corporations are now allowed to spend unlimited amounts of money on behalf of candidates who, when elected, owe the corporations favors. So while “we the people” go to the polls and elect candidates to office, we have far less influence than those corporations.
Is it any wonder that our government is failing to meet the needs of the people? When corporate interests trump the public interest, we get policies that serve wealthy corporations rather than working families and small businesses.
Main Street business owners know Citizens United is bad for small businesses. In a recent poll, 66% of small business owners said unlimited corporate money in elections is bad for small businesses, while just 9% said it is good.
Restore the Constitution
Montana citizens are working to pass an initiative that establishes as the policy of the State of Montana that corporations are not people entitled to constitutional rights and bans corporate money in campaigns. It also charges Congress and the Montana Legislature to reverse federal court rulings with an amendment to the U.S. Constitution specifying that only people are people.
By clarifying that corporations are not people and money is not speech, we can get the big money out of politics, limit campaign contributions from wealthy individuals, and eliminate political spending by corporations in elections.
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