At a meeting with financial supporters on Thursday, Hillary Clinton vowed to put forth Supreme Court nominees that were committed to overturning the 2010 Citizens United ruling. Hillary Clinton’s decision to make opposing the Citizens United ruling a litmus test for Supreme Court nominees follows a similar pledge made by her Democratic primary opponent Bernie Sanders.
On Sunday, during an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation”, Sanders stated:
If elected president, I will have a litmus test in terms of my nominee to be a Supreme Court justice. And that nominee will say that we are all going to overturn this disastrous Supreme Court decision on Citizens United because that decision is undermining American democracy. I do not believe that billionaires should be able to buy politicians.
Clinton echoed those sentiments on Thursday, according to anonymous attendees at a Clinton-held event in Brooklyn. One of the attendees stated:
She said she is going to do everything she can. She was very firm about this – that this Supreme Court [Citzens United] decision is just a disaster.
With Clinton and Sanders both insisting that they would only appoint Supreme Court nominees who oppose the Citizens United ruling, the Democratic Party has signaled its intent to fight to reduce the influence of big money in American politics.
While more reform is needed than simply repealing the Citizens United ruling, overturning that decision is one positive step towards reigning in the power of billionaires and multi-millionaires to wield unprecedented power over the American political process.
Bernie Sanders entry into the race has brought the role of money into the forefront of the debate, and it appears that Hillary Clinton is taking his message seriously as she has tacked in the same direction as Sanders on the issue of overturning Citizens United. Reducing the role of money in politics is a theme that resonates with ordinary voters across the political spectrum. Democrats are taking note, and arguing for reform. They are also working to ensure that if America elects a Democrat in 2016, the president will be committed to choosing Supreme Court appointees that also want to curb the power of big money in U.S. politics.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.