Citizens United petition to circulate in Midcoast

Feb 20, 2014
Naomi Cohen of Hope and Bill Eberle of Thomaston display the We The People Maine petition at the Statehouse Feb. 19.

Augusta — Several members of the Rockland-based group, We The People Maine traveled to Augusta Feb. 19 to pick up their newly approved petition from the Secretary of State's office.

The document was drafted by a team of Maine lawyers, reviewed by constitutional scholars and scanned for any irregularities by the Secretary of State.

In a nutshell the petition seeks to reverse a history of Supreme Court decisions, reinforced in 2010 by the Citizens United vs. The Federal Elections Commission ruling, that grants corporations the same First Amendment rights guaranteed to people. It’s now the law of the land that huge corporate cash donations to politicians are considered a legal exercise of freedom of speech.

The We The People Maine petition represents a head-on challenge to the law by flatly declaring corporations are not people and money is not speech. The petition instructs the Maine Legislature to notify the United States Congress that the State of Maine is calling for an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to that effect.

We the People Maine is currently engaged in enlisting help from individuals and organizations, fundraising, setting up a computer data base and a host of other tasks that will enable them to collect the 57,277 signatures needed to send the petition to the Statehouse.

The first signatures will be obtained at a potluck/signing event in Warren Saturday, March 1. The effort will then become statewide.

For additional information, call 691-0322.

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