South Dakota’s Weiland: Get ‘big money’ out of politics

Rick Weiland

WEST VIRGINIA, March 29, 2014 — South Dakota is an important race for the Democrats in 2014. The Democrats need to keep the current South Dakota Senate seat blue to keep Harry Reid Majority Leader instead of that damn Beltway turtle. More importantly, Democrats need to keep the seat for the sake of South Dakota and for the American people.

The Democrats hope in South Dakota rests on prairie populist Rick Weiland. Weiland is far from a radical, and  what he wants to do for ordinary American working families is dead-center among Democrats in the Senate.

Weiland has been traveling across South Dakota for the last 10 months talking about getting ‘big money’ out of politics and taking our country back.

Yesterday, he reminded his supporters that he’s “visited over 325 of our towns, talking to people in their kitchens, living rooms, cafes, post offices, banks, and businesses.  I’ve walked the neighborhoods and the main streets talking with voters about how big money has turned our government against us.”

And he warned them about the plutocrats in the GOP who are ready to deploy hundreds of millions of dollars to take over and wreck our democratic system.

All you have to do is turn your gaze to Las Vegas to see how one person– one billionaire– is trying to buy buy the next president of the United States. Sheldon Adelson, who spent 100 million dollars on the 2012 elections, is interviewing candidates. Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Scott Walker, and John Kasich, all potential Republican Presidential candidates, have traveled there to see if Sheldon thinks they are qualified to be President. It has been dubbed the Sheldon Adelson Primary.

They are there to kiss Sheldon’s ring and ask for his blessing to run for President. Our political process has now devolved to the point where presidential candidates have to trot out to Las Vegas and apply to a Vegas Kingpin to be president.

This is not how our government is supposed to work. Billionaires are not supposed to pick the next President – the people are. How can anyone say unlimited campaign contributions don’t influence elected officials? Have you seen Presidential candidates beating down your door and asking for your support? Then again, we don’t have a billion dollars to buy a politician.

This is why I have a constitutional amendment on the back of my business card that would overturn Citizen’s United and bring sanity back to our campaigns. It is straightforward: “So that the votes of all, rather than the wealth of the few, shall direct the course of this Republic, Congress shall have the power to limit the raising and spending of money with respect to federal elections…”

We will never get a government “of, for and by the people” as long as billionaires such as Sheldon Adelson can spend 100 million dollars electing the president of their choosing.

Need an example of big money influencing politics?  Read The NAFTA Curse 20 years later.

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