Common Cause begins ballot initiative

WASHINGTON: Common Cause has launched a national grassroots campaign urging lawmakers to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court's Citizens United vs. Federal Elections Commission decision.

WASHINGTON: Common Cause has launched a national grassroots campaign urging lawmakers to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court's Citizens United vs. Federal Elections Commission decision. The ruling eliminated restrictions on political spending by corporations.

The organization wants to place initiatives on state ballots that would urge Congress to act on the issue.  

“By getting the public on the record in each state, it's providing clear instructions that a [constitutional amendment] is what we want,” said Mary Boyle, VP of communications at Common Cause.

Amending the Constitution requires the support of two-thirds of both the US Senate and the House of Representatives, and the change must be ratified by three-quarters of all states.

To support the initiative, the group plans to release a video featuring Common Cause chairman Robert Reich, a former US secretary of Labor and current University of California, Berkeley professor.

The lobbying group's state chapters will hold press conferences and conduct email campaigns to draw attention to the issue, as well as collect signatures. The organization is still finalizing plans for a paid advertising component for the campaign.

Common Cause also plans to heavily use Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube in the initiative.

“It's where people are, so we have to be there,” Boyle said, about the importance of digital tools.

Washington-based agency Fitzgibbon Media is aiding Common Cause with the effort. Boyle declined to provide a campaign budget.

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