Democracy Committee – (Chair: Paul Lauenstein)
The Democracy Committee raises awareness of the harm being done to our democracy and our environment by the ability of big corporations and billionaires to use their financial resources to silence the voices of average Americans in public affairs. It also promotes a 28th Constitutional amendment to put We the People back in charge of our government by establishing two fundamental principles:
- Inalienable Constitutional rights apply to natural persons only, not incorporated entities, and
- Money is not a form of speech, and shall be regulated by Congress and state governments to ensure an equal voice in our democracy for every American.
Achieving such an amendment would enable citizens to pass laws designed to promote environmental health (i.e. reduce carbon emissions and other forms of harmful pollution) without interference from powerful special interests.
The Democracy Committee raises awareness by making presentations to various groups to describe the consequences of Supreme Court decisions such as Buckley v. Valeo, Citizens United v. FEC, and McCutcheon v. FEC that have opened the floodgates to big money in politics and the Constitutional amendment we need to overturn them. We have made dozens of such presentations.
The Committee also promotes a bill in the Massachusetts legislature called the We the People Resolution that would have Massachusetts join the other five states (VT, CA, IL, NJ and RI) that have already passed resolutions calling for an amendment-proposing convention pursuant to Article V of the U.S. Constitution. We have approached every one of the 200 Massachusetts state representatives and senators, and received endorsements from at least 85 of them.
In addition, the Committee asks members of Congress to propose a 28th Constitutional amendment to help achieve government of, by and for all the people rather than just powerful special interests. Eight of the nine U.S. Congressmen and Congresswomen from Massachusetts have co-sponsored the We the People Amendment (H.J.R. 48). We are working to convince our U.S. Senators Warren and Markey to do so too.
The Committee collaborates with groups such as We the People Massachusetts, Wolf-PAC, Move to Amend and American Promise to promote our shared goal of a 28th Constitutional amendment.