Since the Supreme Court's decision in Citizens United more than five years ago, the potential for corporations to secretly spend shareholder money to influence elections has been an ever-increasing threat to investors. The investors the SEC is charged to protect have called on the agency to deal with this problem, but thus far Mary Jo White hasn't moved the rule forward.
Our founding fathers were prescient in many ways, providing a system that had checks and balances designed to preserve liberty and ensure a peaceful and stable society. But the founding principle of this form of government is the consent of the governed. The gigantic role of money in our political system isn't what they had in mind.
Turn on the TV, and you'll be hard-pressed to find a news story about Americans uniting across ideologies. One idea, however, has risen above the fray to achieve practically unheard-of heights of public support. An incredible 97 percent of Americans agree: the time has come to end government corruption in America.
Millionaire bundlers for presidential candidates are feeling hurt that candidates, now more focused on billionaires, aren't courting them in the manner to which they are accustomed. And the angst of these millionaires is bipartisan. The ultimate pal for Wall Street and big money in the Democratic Party may fall to a crashing defeat: Rahm Emanuel is in real trouble.
The class bias of American politics has not only cost us our democracy. It has also cost us our jobs, our health, and our security. For years, the recovery was crippled by the politics of austerity, as a bipartisan coalition took a butcher's knife to the public sector, and as balanced budgets took precedence over basic needs.
Too much money in our elections undermines representative democracy. But the FEC can begin to right its wrongs. It should recommit to enforcing the law and safeguarding democracy. And perhaps sometimes soon, the FEC should invite the public back to the podium for some good old-fashioned free speech -- the kind that doesn't cost a dime.