An updated and expanded report released by People For the American Way today analyzes the impact corporate money had on the 2010 elections, the first election cycle after the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC. The report, Citizens Blindsided: Secret Corporate Money in the 2010 Elections and America’s New Shadow Democracy, has been updated to included the total amounts spent and success rates of outside pro-corporate groups, and expanded to include new group profiles and a new foreword.
- In a new foreword, constitutional law professor, Maryland state senator, and People For Senior Fellow Jamie Raskin, explores the legal and political implications of corporate spending in elections. “For the first time in our history,” he writes, “the Court has thus transformed single-minded profit-making corporations into full-fledged political citizens armed with the rights of the people.”
- The report includes updated spending totals and electoral success rates for 14 groups and profiles two additional groups: the radically anti-government astroturfing outfit Americans for Limited Government and Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform.
- Examines the false claims repeated by many corporate-funded outside groups on issues including health care reform, the stimulus, and the American Clean Energy and Security Act. In the last ninety days of the election, the twenty largest conservative outside groups ran 144,182 television ads. Seventy-seven percent of those ads came from organizations which do not disclose their donors.
- Includes a total accounting of anonymous spending in the 2010 elections. Anonymously funded Pro-GOP groups outspent their pro-Democratic counterparts by a 6:1 margin. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, eight of the top ten groups that did not disclose their sources of funding directed the bulk of their money to GOP candidates.