New PFAW Poll Shows Americans Want Action to Correct Citizens United

Results Show Broad Support for Candidates Who Support A Constitutional Amendment to Overturn the Decision

Results of a poll conducted by Hart Research Associates for People For the American Way revealed that Americans across the political spectrum are intensely concerned about corporate influence in our democracy and disagree with the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC.

In addition, more than three-quarters of voters said that they support a Constitutional Amendment if one is necessary to limit the amount that corporations can spend in elections. A similar majority are inclined to support a candidate who has spoken out in favor of an amendment. The support cuts across party and ideology, with majorities of Democrats, Republicans and Independents in support of the measure.

The poll reveals:

  • 85% of voters say that corporations have too much influence over the political system today while 93% say that average citizens have too little influence.
  • 95% agree that “Corporations spend money on politics mainly to buy influence in government and elect people who are favorable to their financial interests.” (74% strongly agree)
  • 85% disagree that “Corporations should be able to spend as much as they want to influence the outcome of elections because the Constitution protects freedom of speech.” (63% strongly disagree)
  • 93% agree that “There should be clear limits on how much money corporations can spend to influence the outcome of an election.” (74% strongly agree)
  • 77% think Congress should support an amendment to limit the amount U.S. corporations can spend to influence elections.
  • 74% say that they would be more likely to vote for a candidate for Congress who pledged to support a Constitutional Amendment limiting corporate spending in elections.

“These results make perfectly clear that Americans want bold action to overturn Citizens United,” said Michael B. Keegan, President of People For the American Way. “Voters are strongly supportive of initiatives, including a Constitutional Amendment, to reign in corporate spending in elections. Democratic and Republican politicians alike would do well to catch up with their constituents and lend their support to an Amendment that does just that.”

Leading up to Election Day, People For the American Way, along with Public Citizen, will be asking congressional candidates to pledge to support a Constitutional Amendment, and sharing the information with voters.

You can read more about the poll here (PDF).

To arrange an interview with a People For spokesperson, or with Geoff Garin of Hart Research Associates, who conducted the poll, contact Miranda Blue at 202-467-4999 or media@pfaw.org.

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