Congressman Jim McGovern

Representing the 2nd District of Massachussetts
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U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern Introduces Constitutional Amendment to Restore 'People's Rights'; repeal Citizens United

Nov 16, 2011
Press Release
U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern has introduced a Constitutional amendment in the House of Representatives to repeal the recent Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. FEC and to restore the Founding Fathers' intent to grant rights to people, not corporation


U.S. REP. JIM MCGOVERN INTRODUCES CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO RESTORE ‘PEOPLE'S RIGHTS'

U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern has introduced a Constitutional amendment in the House of Representatives to repeal the recent Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. FEC and to restore the Founding Fathers' intent to grant rights to people, not corporations.

The legislation, H.J. Res 88, is intended to -clarify the authority of Congress and the States to regulate corporations, limited liability companies or other corporate entities established by the laws of any state, the United States, or any foreign state.-

-As any high school civics student knows, the first three words of the preamble to the Constitution are ‘We the People,' Rep. McGovern said. -Corporations are not people. They do not breathe. They do not have children. They do not die in war. They are artificial entities which we the people create and, as such, we govern them, not the other way around.-

-The Citizens United ruling,- McGovern continued, -marks the most extreme extension of a corporate rights doctrine which has eroded our First Amendment and our Constitution. Now is the time for a 28th Amendment that lifts up the promise of American self-government: of, for, and by the people.-

The Citizens United case effectively reversed decades of precedent recognizing the authority of the people to regulate corporate spending in our elections. But the consequences of the case are not just limited to campaign finance issues. The newfound -Corporate Rights- movement that seeks to give corporations the same rights as people in any situation has been making troubling gains.

Recently, a federal judge blocked the Food and Drug Administration from requiring tobacco companies to place graphic warning labels on cigarette packages, arguing that cigarette makers had the right to free speech.

Rep. McGovern's amendment also clearly protects the people's rights of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, free exercise of religion and freedom of association.

-We need to have a serious, thoughtful debate in this country about this important issue,- Rep. McGovern said. -I hope that my amendment will begin to spur that debate.-

The text of Rep. McGovern's amendment is attached.