February 1, 2017 / Press Releases

ECU: Senate Should Reject Gorsuch

For Immediate Release
Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Contact: Adam Bozzi, adam@endcitizensunited.org


With 3 million-member network, End Citizens United will launch local and national grassroots efforts in opposition to nominee
Appointment could give Court a majority that would support Citizen United and fuel a rigged system that favors the wealthy and special interests

 

End Citizens United Executive Director Tiffany Muller released the following statement today in opposition to President Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

“Based on President Trump’s pledge to nominate a justice in the mold of Antonin Scalia, his dismal record of appointments, and Judge Gorsuch’s own record, we expect Gorsuch will side with corporate interests on cases like Citizens United [1].  Unless he definitively speaks out against the decisions that opened the door to unlimited and undisclosed spending in our elections, he should not be confirmed to a seat on the nation’s highest court.  The Senate should reject his nomination.

“Gorsuch’s appointment would mean more money and less transparency in our elections.  It would allow big money to expand its undue and out-sized influence on our democracy, and it would further erode the ability of American families to have their voices heard.  End Citizens United will mobilize our 3 million members to oppose Gorsuch and let senators know they must reject this nomination.  Every senator, in every state, will hear from our members.

“After watching the spending of more than $1.5 billion by outside groups – most of it from unlimited and/or anonymous donations – in the 2016 elections, Americans are overwhelmingly demanding change.  A majority of Americans in every part of the country, regardless of party or ideology, believe that money in politics is corroding our democracy.  They understand that it’s fueling a system designed to cater to wealthy and corporate special interests, while the rest of us are left behind.  They don’t want an out-of-touch Court that will double down by giving more control of our elections to corporate special interests.”

Polling conducted for End Citizens United finds that nationwide, voters have serious concerns about the state of our campaign finance system.  They strongly dislike the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision (73% – 18%) and believe that the amount of money that corporations and the wealthy spend on political campaigns impacts their families (66% – 29%).  Among Independent voters, reducing the influence of special interest money in American politics was the third-highest rated priority (following only terrorism and jobs/incomes).

[1] The record indicates that Gorsuch will not help end unlimited and unaccountable money in politics.  President Trump has pledged to nominate a justice in the mold of Antonin Scalia, a staunch opponent on limits on money in politics.  Since his election, Trump has surrounded himself with a cadre of appointments with close ties to Super PACs and secret money groups. His White House counsel, who vetted Gorsuch, Don McGahn helped create the gridlock at the FEC to advance the power of money in politics.

Furthermore, Judge Gorsuch’s has made rulings on money in politics that include an openness to applying the highest level of review (strict scrutiny) to a donor’s right to make political contributions, and a ruling supporting the notion that corporations are “persons” in the Hobby Lobby case. [Riddle v. Hickenlooper, 742 F.3d 992, 930-31 (10th Cir. 2014) (Gorsuch, J., concurring)] [Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. v. Sebelius, 723 F.3d 1114 (10th Cir. 2013) (Gorsuch, J., concurring)]

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