The War on Democracy

Corporations AREN'T people -- you are

Republicans and their corporate friends have been writing the playbook for the war on Democracy for years.


Going "nuclear" and changing decades of rules and tradition in the U.S. Senate in order to confirm conservative Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court is just the latest example of their efforts to thwart the will of working people in favor of corporate interests and the wealthy.


But while the marching orders -- and this latest battle -- are coming out of Washington, Republicans are playing the real game in the states, with endless efforts like voter suppression through strict ID laws, partisan gerrymandering, and legislation to reduce the power of elected Democratic officials.


In Pennsylvania, the majority party in the legislature has turned to all of these tactics and more.


Their efforts to disenfranchise tens of thousands of Pennsylvanians through a strict voter ID law were declared unconstitutional.


Undeterred, they continue to move various legislative proposals to weaken the governor's ability to manage the state workforce, direct economic development and other state funding, appoint boards and commissions, and otherwise interfere with powers and duties clearly reserved in the state constitution for the executive and judicial branches of government.


Last week's vote in the state House to reinstate mandatory minimum sentences that have proven ineffective and were previously ruled unconstitutional is a perfect example. 


The pattern is clear: when Republicans don't like legislative rules or the will of the people, they simply try to rewrite the rules or disregard or nullify the will of the people. 


Republicans have become enamored of the notion that corporations are people, and that their money equals a "voice" -- a voice that is more important than yours. This is the bedrock upon which the disastrous "Citizens United" ruling rests -- a ruling that has flooded our politics with unchecked special interest money and jeopardized our democracy.


But corporations AREN'T people -- you are. Your government should working for you -- not just the corporations and the well-connected.


It's clear that in Washington and Harrisburg, one party believes in a democracy where your voice governs, and the other party believes in a plutocracy, where corporations and the wealthy rule for their own gain at the expense of everyone else.