WASHINGTON, DC — Un-PAC hosted a “Corporate Wealth & Democracy’s Health” press conference with prominent corporations and billionaires, congratulating the Senate for preventing the passage of the For The People Act, S.1., a critical bill that reduces the role of big money out of politics and makes it easier for citizens to vote. This was a direct response to the Senate’s inability to pass S.1 during a June 22nd Senate procedural vote on the bill. S.1 has not yet been debated or passed due to the filibuster threat.
The Senate has accepted $3,490,000,000 from corporate lobbying interests from 2015-2020, per Open Secrets. Under current law, acceptance of money from lobbyists and donors is completely legal, which proponents of the For The People Act aim to change. The bill would force the disclosure of secret election spending, effectively ending “dark money”, and increase the time between which members of Congress are able to leave their offices and join the private sector as lobbyists, among other reforms.
Students and young people performed as corporate lobbyists during the press conference, highlighting the corruption elected officials take part in when they prioritize the interests of big money donors over the interests of their constituents. Senator Warner of neighboring state Virginia voted yes on the For The People Act in June, but has continued to accept dark money interests and has not done everything in his power to make certain S.1 passes.
Un-PAC is a statewide, nonpartisan organization activating students and young people to demand long overdue structural democracy reform. Young people face the consequences of a broken democracy, that deprioritizes action on climate change, ignores the student debt crisis, and creates obstacles for youth participation in government.
“Wealthy donors and special interests have hijacked our democracy,” said Victoria Freire, organizer with Un-PAC DC, “making it harder for young people to vote, and blocking solutions to the problems we care about. Our futures are on the line in the Senate’s decision to pass S.1 or not.”
Un-PAC is a statewide, nonpartisan organization activating students and young people to demand long overdue structural democracy reform so that we can actually solve urgent problems. Additional information can be found at www.un-pac.org, or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/LetsUnPAC.