When history looks back at this era in politics, it will be known as the “Era of Big Money”. Ever since the Citizens United court case that essentially defined corporations as people, campaign spending has gone completely off the rails.
The amount of money being tossed around by special interest groups on both sides of the aisle is enough to make you literally sick to your stomach. This might be one of the few issues where a plurality of Americans agree on that needs to be completely overhauled.
Yet, while only 25% of Americans believe SuperPACs should be “legal” we are still debating the roles of them. Worse than that, it appears politicians on the right side of the aisle appear to be in love with the idea.
As last night’s chart on the Rachel Maddow Show proved, outside special interest groups—with the exception of unions—benefit Republican politicians far more than their Democratic counterparts. The GOP has completely sold out their base in favor of the corporations that fund their campaigns.
So the one “equal” to these corporations are workers unions and as anyone with a television has noted, they have been under continuous fire since the 2010 mid-term elections. I try not to use the phrase “War On….” too often because it generalizes too many things at once, but how else could you describe the backlash unions have faced as of late? Maybe an assault as it hasn’t completely taken over a majority of the country as of yet?
On Tuesday, Wisconsin voters head to the polls to vote in a special recall election to see if current Governor Scott Walker (R) gets to continue his term or if Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett (D) gets to sit in the Governor’s Mansion. When it comes to elections, it appears the political realm has found its counterpart to Citizens United. The implications of this recall election are gargantuan. If Walker escapes with a win, then we could see a continued assault on unions.
The snowball effect could turn into an avalanche as we’ve already seen unions lose benefits in New Jersey, courtesy of Governor Chris Christie, and Indiana where Governor Mitch Daniels oversaw union busting. If Walker doesn’t face any electoral ramifications, then it completely opens the playing field and we could see furthering censorship of unions in America.
Now some people believe that unions should keep their noses out of politics and focus on the workers only. Yet, on the flip side, any time the government tries to interfere with business and politics; it’s called “big” government? Why can we not have it both ways? When a corporation is taken down, it’s immediately denounced as some nefarious Marxist plot generated by crazed liberals who are only focused on silencing the rich.
Still, only 25% of voters support SuperPACs involvement in politics. This is a clear, unpopular issue but it seems that the only re-tooling of the system comes at the unions expense. Corporations continue to be the kingmakers and if you take away unions, then it really damages the Democratic Party as it loses their main benefactors.
Corporations are nearly immune to any legislative regulation as the country, in a turbulent economy to say the least, is still taking their side. Unions have faced the wrath of government, but you never hear a right-wing blogger denounce Scott Walker and the Republicans in Wisconsin as “Marxists”, do you? Wouldn’t one classify a government stepping in and busting a group of constituents right to work as “big”?
But no, as the GOP continues to rebrand itself as the party of men in suits, they get a pass with its constituents who are again….probably against the SuperPACs that fund them. Pro-business should mean a balanced playing field where businesses can succeed or fail. But now, pro-business just appears to mean that business are impervious to laws like every day people.
No Mitt Romney, corporations aren’t people too….they are more powerful than us.