Republican super PACs and other outside groups shaped by a loose network of prominent conservatives – including Karl Rove, the Koch brothers and Tom Donohue of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce – plan to spend roughly $1 billion on November’s elections for the White House and control of Congress, according to officials familiar with the groups’ internal operations. That total includes previously undisclosed plans for newly aggressive spending by the Koch brothers, who are steering funding to build sophisticated, county-by-county operations in key states. POLITICO has learned that Koch-related organizations plan to spend about $400 million ahead of the 2012 elections – twice what they had been expected to commit.
Probably the sickest thing about it is that these organizations claim they aren’t political in nature, but are actually providing a public service. Nothing quite like billionaires telling working people that “we” are broke and they need their tax cut extended permanently. —- GOP groups plan record $1 billion blitz – Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei
UPDATE: Former Supreme Court Justice Stevens speaks out on the ruling (“Citizens United”) that allows these shenanigans to happen. BTW, in their ruling, the SCOTUS claimed stuff like this wouldn’t happen. They were obviously wrong.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has said he expects the court has already had second thoughts about parts of its controversial Citizens United ruling that eased restrictions on corporate spending in political campaigns.
The sharply divided court ruled that independent spending by corporations does “not give rise to corruption or the appearance of corruption.” Stevens, who dissented from that 2010 decision, said that at some point the court will have to issue an opinion “explicitly crafting an exception that will create a crack in the foundation” of that ruling.
Speaking to hundreds of people at a Wednesday night event in Little Rock, the retired justice said President Barack Obama accurately criticized the ruling for reversing a century of law and allowing special interest groups to pump money into elections.
He cited Justice Samuel Alito’s reaction to Obama’s criticism, along with one of the court’s later rulings when the justices rejected a free-speech challenge from humanitarian aid groups to a law that bars support to terrorist organizations.
The conundrum the court has created is pretty simple….corporations are non-citizens that can spend unlimited amounts of money to sway elections…BUT…certain types of corporate non-citizens are barred from this process. The justification that the 1st Amendment applies to some classes on non-citizen organizations but doesn’t apply to other non-citizens is lacking.
The simplest and most obvious solution would be to reverse the notion that entities that exist only on paper have any rights at all…but considering they can use unlimited funds to now protects those rights makes the situation somewhat more problematic.