Uploaded on Feb 6, 2011
FOR THE PEOPLE Summit Washington D.C. Jan. 20 to 22
"Citizens United" anniversary sparks D.C. summit, rally, national meetings
WASHINGTON D.C. Jan. 14, 2011 — To mark the first anniversary of the controversial "Citizens United" Supreme Court ruling, a coalition of advocacy groups and concerned citizens convened in Washington DC at the For the People Summit, which included a strategic conference at the Washington Plaza Hotel and a "We the Corporations" vs. "We the People"rally at the U.S. Capitol.
In Washington, Summit events included:
Lobby Day on Capitol Hill (Jan. 20) supplemented by Lobby Days around the country
Artist showcase & Party For the People (Jan 20, 6 to 9 PM at K Street Lounge)
"We the Corporations vs. We the People" Rally (Jan. 21 at 11 AM at the U.S. Capitol Area 9)
Two-day Summit (Jan. 21 and 22 at the Washington Plaza Hotel at Thomas Circle)
Bill Moyer of the Backbone Campaign and Annabel Park of the Coffee Party are two of the principal organizers. "It's very hard to make progress on any issue without addressing the problem of money in politics," Park said, "because right now it takes a nearly impossible amount of effort for ordinary people to compete with the daily influence that entrenched lobbyists enjoy. To succeed, we need to step outside the traditional left-right-center framework and find common cause across the political divide."
"The greatest political reform of our time will be to abolish the legal concept of 'corporate personhood' and the inherently anti-democratic equation of money with political speech," Moyer said. "I believe this monumental task will be achieved in the coming years built on a foundation of community-based battles to return power to the People."
Nancy Price, Co-chair of the Alliance for Democracy, said she is impressed with the emerging coalition, for which she has served as an adviser. "The Summit will be an open discussion putting aside political, cultural, and ideological differences because the problem of money in politics is uniting America like few issues can," she said. "80% of us disapprove of the Citizens United decision. 87% disapprove of the job Congress is doing. The American public will not accept a future in which we are no longer a self-determining people."
Lisa Graves, Executive Director of the Center for Media and Democracy, and former Deputy Assistant Attorney General, is also advising and will be speaking at the Summit. "Nearly a million Americans have signed petitions against the Supreme Court's decision to expand corporate rights," she said. "We are coming together on the anniversary of this terrible decision because, regardless of party labels, we are Americans first and foremost and we must reject the Court's efforts to undermine the power of We the People in our democracy."
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