voting rights

One Percenters Buying Themselves an Aristocracy

The U.S. Constitution guarantees separation of church and state. What this nation needs now is separation of wealth and state.

Without such a protection, Americans stand to lose their democracy. They’ll be ruled instead by an aristocracy of 1 percenters.

That’s the 1 percenters’ plan. To them, it was no more than a perk when the U.S. Supreme Court enabled politicians to open their wallets for unlimited, anonymous campaign contributions. That’s because way before the 2010 Citizens United ruling, 1 percenters were working on a takeover. If the 99 percent don’t stop them soon, don’t establish some sort of separation of wealth and state, then the nation will lose its founding precepts — that all men are created equal and that governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. Aristocracies can ignore the governed.

Already the 1 percenters have been extraordinarily successful. The rich really do enjoy advantages. They’ve succeeded in stuffing Congress with their peers. In America, fewer than 1 percent of all people are millionaires. In Congress, 47 percent are. The median net worth of a U.S. senator in 2010 was $2.56 million.

To read this incisive article by Leo W. Gerard, President of the United Steelworkers, please click here

AFL-CIO and Partners Announce Far-Reaching Voter Rights Campaign

The AFL-CIO today announced a far-reaching, multi-partner campaign to register voters, ensure they can cast their ballots without intimidation and follow through to make sure those votes are counted. Speaking at a press conference here in Washington, D.C., AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Arlene Holt Baker said this campaign represents the union movement’s most aggressive push ever because “the attacks we are seeing on the right to vote are unprecedented”.

“Over the past several months, the AFL-CIO has been working with our affiliates to ensure that registered voters are able to cast their votes without intimidation and to ensure that their votes are counted,” Holt Baker said, with a focus on Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin and Nevada. Some of those partners joined Holt Baker today, including NAACP President Ben Jealous, National Council of La Raza’s Clarissa Martinez-De-Castro and Generational Alliance’s Carmen Berkley.

To read this news story in its entirety–highly recommended–please click here

Gov. Rick Scott Ignores DOJ Demand To End Voter Purge

Gov. Rick Scott (R) plans to ignore a Department of Justice demand that his administration stop purging its voter rolls in violation of federal law.

Janell Ross reports that Scott ordered election officials to continue the purge, even in the face of evidence that a disproportionate amount of names on the list are voters of color. In an initial list of 3000 voters the state suspects are non-citizens, blacks and Latinos were disproportionately represented. Analysis by the Miami Herald found nearly 60 percent of the people on the list to be Latino despite the fact that Latinos constitute just 13 percent of the state’s electorate.

To read more about how Florida has become one more state to ignore the Department of Justice and Federal Law, please click here