March 4, 2019 / Press Releases

End Citizens United Urges Inslee to Disavow Single-Candidate Super PAC

WASHINGTON, D.C. — End Citizens United (ECU) today sent a letter to Governor Jay Inslee urging him to disavow the single-candidate super PAC, Act On Climate Now. Inslee entered the race on Friday amidst reports that he may endorse the help of a candidate-specific super PAC. Inslee would be the first candidate in the 2020 Democratic primary to do so.

The letter reads:

“Even worse than super PACs themselves are single-candidate super PACs. These are super PACs designed to serve as an arm of the campaign. They exist when politicians either directly raise money for the super PAC or signal to big donors that the super PAC has their support. Often, politicians exploit loopholes in the law to find ways to coordinate with them, including sending their top political operatives to run these super PACs.

“We urge you to join the candidates in the Democratic presidential primary who have taken this bold step, and publicly disavow this effort and any other effort to create a single-candidate super PAC that serves as a shadow support to your campaign. We hope you will strive to run a campaign that demonstrates to primary voters that you will put people before special interests.”

Below is the full letter:

Dear Governor Jay Inslee,

Congratulations on your candidacy for president. We look forward to hearing more about your ideas on how to ensure all Americans have an equal voice in our democracy, and applaud your decision to turn down contributions from corporate PACs. We are, however, concerned about reports that a former top aide has established a super PAC, Act On Climate Now, to support your campaign and that you have declined to disavow the effort.

The Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision opened the door to a flood of special interest spending that is corrupting our democracy. It led to the creation of super PACs, which are mainly funded by a handful of mega-donors and dark money groups that are drowning out the voices of the American people in our elections. They are influencing policy decisions in government to skew outcomes in favor of big donors at the expense of everyone else.

Even worse than super PACs themselves are single-candidate super PACs. These are super PACs designed to serve as an arm of the campaign. They exist when politicians either directly raise money for the super PAC or signal to big donors that the super PAC has their support. Often, politicians exploit loopholes in the law to find ways to coordinate with them, including sending their top political operatives to run these super PACs.

Recent news reports indicate that one of your top political operatives has set up a super PAC with the intention of supporting your presidential campaign.

To date, many candidates in the primary have already said they believe no candidate should have a single-candidate super PAC in this race. By doing so, they are declaring that this campaign should be about doing what’s right for the American people, not special interests.

We urge you to join the candidates in the Democratic presidential primary who have taken this bold step, and publicly disavow this effort and any other effort to create a single-candidate super PAC that serves as a shadow support to your campaign. We hope you will strive to run a  campaign that demonstrates to primary voters that you will put people before special interests.

Respectfully,
Tiffany Muller, president of End Citizens United

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