On Feb. 6, the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties held a public hearing on the 28th Amendment to overturn Citizens United and get big money out of politics. Advocates for the amendment, including American Promise State Manager Azor Cole and various citizen leaders, provided written testimony to the Subcommittee. Below is testimony from Chet Hunt of Knoxville, Tennessee.
Written Testimony of Chet Hunt
U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties
Hearing on Citizens United at 10: The Consequences for Democracy & Potential Responses By Congress February 6, 2020
I am a retired City Manager and Adjunct Professor, a father and grandfather, a Vietnam veteran, and a founding member of American Promise Association of Knoxville. I helped found this organization because I believe we as a nation are once again facing a dreadful menace, one that threatens the very ideals on which our nation was founded. It is the terrible error of judgment in the 2010 Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v FEC, which spawned a plague of greed and corruption that is now spreading throughout our governing institutions and infecting the very fabric of our society. The unbridled flow of money from the wealthiest among us, with both foreign and domestic origins, is strangling our political process and creating a pit of paid obstructionists in Congress. The relentless corporatization of our democracy for the self- interests of the few must be halted so “we the people” can speak as free and equal citizens. We must have a 28th Amendment to the Constitution that restores American democracy, ensures the integrity of free and fair elections, and protects both state and federal reform processes as our founders prescribed in Article V of the U.S. Constitution. The framers of the Constitution intended for the Congress of the United States to be dependent on the American people, not on powerful special interests, or third-party groups masquerading as philanthropic organizations, or Super PACs that stealthily channel unlimited amounts of anonymous “dark money” to engineer our elections and pervert our democracy. This is why we must, without waver, advance the 28th Amendment to restore political integrity and equality of citizenship now and forever. I am committed to the demand for a 28th Amendment to expel the corrupting influence of big money in politics, and I urge you to join me by passing this Amendment and returning it to the states for ratification. The times have found us and we must do what needs to be done.